Roland Rizzo - Principal Clarinet


Roland is an honors graduate of the New England Conservatory of Music and was elected to Pi Kappa Lambda (the National Music Honor Society).  He also has graduate studies in music from Catholic University and computer science from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.  His motto: "you stop learning when the urn is on the mantle".


His amateur ensemble playing included Connecticut regional and state bands as well as the McDonald’s All-American High School Band (which his friends used to call “The Hamburger Band”).  He has played practically every type of music with every type of ensemble from classical chamber groups and orchestras to small jazz groups, big bands and various commercial/club performers.  Ensembles include the Wellesley Orchestra, Meriden Symphony, New Britain Symphony and Goodspeed Opera House Orchestra. He has been a guest soloist with the Meriden Symphony and at his alma mater, NEC. His studio work in Connecticut, New York and Maryland includes Radio and TV commercials as well as backing tracks for artists.  His interest in jazz lead to an Outstanding Performance award at the Notre Dame Collegiate Jazz Festival in South Bend, Indiana and a performance at the Blue Note in New York city.  In addition, he has been a public school as well as private music teacher and currently is a Composer/Sound Designer for computer games, which he has been doing as both an employee and contractor since 1983.


The HVSO has been a wonderful opportunity to return his focus to classical music in both large and small ensembles, including “Il Duo Vermicelli” with fellow HVSO clarinetist Donna Noyes.