Born in 1965, Antonello Monni is a saxophonist, clarinetist, composer, arranger, and educator. He has also made several recordings in the field of both jazz and pop music.
He began to study the saxophone at the age of 13, taking lessons from a bandmaster in Massa Carrara, (Tuscany), the town where he grew up.
In 1984 he also started to study the clarinet at the Conservatory of Livorno, where he brilliantly graduated in 1991, under the guidance of Maestro Mario Del Zoppo.
During this period of classical studies, he decided to undertake a very in-depth study of jazz, by attending the stages of the famous Academy of "Siena Jazz", with the following teachers: Claudio Fasoli, Luca Flores, Bruno Tommaso; in 1987 he attended the summer stages of the "Berkley Music School” in Perugia. His teachers were some of the most prestigious and popular artists: Bill Pierce, Greg Badolato, Ed Uribe, Larry Monroe, Lennie Peterson.
Later he enrolled in the noble school CPM (1991/1993) of Milan, where he specialized in jazz and graduated with honors with the famous Italian saxophonist Tino Tracanna. In this period, he began a series of professional collaborations, working for the Italian networks RAI and Mediaset. He also performed live and made studio recordings with very famous pop Italian artists, such as Demo Morselli, Laura Pausini, Franco Mussida (PFM), Marina Rei, Daniele Silvestri, Fausto Leali, Sergio Caputo, Annalisa Minetti, Bernardo Lanzetti, Alex Baroni, Fabio Concato.
However, his artistic debut in jazz took place during the stages of 1986, when he caught Charlie Haiden’s eye, a great bassist who invited him to play live with his Quartet.
(C. Haiden , P. Markowits, P. Motian, E. Watts).
In Milan he continued to collaborate with many famous italian musicians, and in 2002 he graduated, with honors, in Jazz at the Conservatory of Livorno: his Supervisor was the well known pianist and composer Mauro Grossi, and his thesis was about Wayne Shorter’s album "Atlantis". He had accidentally met him at a concert, and the great American artist would later praise his work.
In 2002 he also released his first CD as leader, "Friends", for the independent label "Music Center" s.n.c. His work includes six compositions and original arrangements, and a particular version of the famous song "Invitation”. This album also features Giorgio Gaslini, one of the "fathers of italian jazz".
The musicians who took part in this session are some of the most talented and experienced italian musicians: the trumpeter Emilio Soana, the pianists Marco Detto and Mauro Grossi, the bassist Attilio Zanchi, the drummers Marco Castiglioni and Ruggero Pazzaglia. Despite being his artistic debut as leader, the album was praised by the specialist press and it is regularly performed live. During a tour in the United Kingdom, the British press rewieved it as one of the best summer events of 2003.
Besides writing and arranging his own music, he also collaborates with many musicians: one of them, the pianist Marco Detto, invited him to join the recording session of his two albums: "Blue Stones" (2005) and "In The Mean Time" (2009), as side man and arranger of his original songs.
In 2006 he started to collaborate with the pianist, Davide Scagno. They released a CD, “About us”, which includes their original compositions and was published by the label Dodicilune (2008).
The same year, the pianist and composer Fabrizio Campanelli asked him to play “Fundamental Swing", a song which belongs to the soundtrack of the movie "Just a Dad" directed by l. Lucini.
The saxophonist Felice Clemente, asked him to take part, as a guest, in the recording of the album "Blue Of Mine", which in addition to Clemente as a leader, numbers several artists such as Massimo Colombo, Bebo Ferra, Giulio Corini, Massimo Manzi.
In 2014, he released his third work, "Porpora", for the Music Center s.n.c. Conceived as a concept album, this work includes eight original compositions and it is dedicated to the great pianist Lennie Tristano. With its structured arrangements, this album counts 15 musicians, including, as special guest, the legendary saxophonist Bob Mintzer, who plays the main track, which gives the title to the CD. The famous Italian musicologist Maurizio Franco is the author of the liner notes.
He has recorded many live performances playing at clubs and festivals all over Italy and abroad, and accomplished more than 30 recordings; he has published more than 100 arrangements for different ensembles of various kinds and style, and about 50 own compositions.
He was invited to England to do several Master classes, and he worked as Professor of saxophone, theory, and arranged for different schools; Since 2008 he has been Professor of saxophone, ensemble music, and Big Band at the "Civica Scuola di Musica " in Cinisello Balsamo (MI) and the "Piseri" Foundation of Brugherio (MB).
Among the most important musicians he played with:
Tino Tracanna, Roberto Cipelli, Attilio Zanchi, Stefano Cerri, Giulio Visibelli, Tony Arco, BrunoTommaso, Roger Rota, Roberto Martinelli, Luciano Zadro, Giovanni Falzone, Andrea Tofanelli, Massimo Colombo, Marc Anderson, David Mowat, Andy Hague, Charlie Haiden, Phil Markowits, Paul Motian, Ernie Watts, Carlo Morena, Alberto
Mandarini, Mauro Beggio, Franco D’auria, Kyle Gregory, Ferdinando Farao’, Tito Mangialajo, Fabrizio Bernasconi, Bob Mintzer, Carl Orr, Luca Calabrese, Marco Brioschi, Felice Clemente, Davide Scagno, Beppe Caruso, Sergio Orlandi, Daniele Comoglio, Marco Ricci, Antonio Fusco, Davide Ghidoni, Ricardo Arrighini, Mauro Grossi, Bebo Ferra, Giulio Corini, Massimo Manzi, Marco Castiglioni, Ruggero Pazzaglia, Danele Petrosillo, Giampiero Spina, Tullio Ricci, Roberto Paglieri, Cinzia Roncelli, Giovanni Mazzarino, Silvia Infascelli, Gegè Telesforo, Leo Janssen, Giorgio Di Tullio, Nicola Stranieri, Beppe Caruso, Marco Detto, Sandro Di Pisa, Gianfranco Tommasi.