Photo credits (c)
Borja T. Suárez López
the needle and thread
by Fausto Ferraiuolo
The first time I saw Barry, it was in a 1985 Umbria Jazz video.He played with his trio at the Morlacchi theater. I was struck by the elegance of language. From that moment on I started dreaming of being able to study with him.Years later, on a trip to New York in 2007, I accidentally saw an ad in a newspaper: Barry was giving classes at a cultural center.I was thrilled. I rushed to the studio where I remember a group of people around him dedicated to explaining harmonic movements. I was moved by the simplicity and the heart with which he addressed everyone. Since then I have started following him in New York and Rome.
The meetings were very intense and included three categories: the first dedicated to harmonic instruments with various movements, the second to vocals, the third to improvisation for all instruments.This personal method of his immediately questioned everything I thought I knew about harmony and improvisation before him.In New York he gave classes every Tuesday from 6pm to midnight, always keeping the same format. This teaching model has preserved it even when with the pandemic it was impossible to leave the house. Barry continued to give lectures on video until a complication of Covid stopped his big heart on December 8, 2021. I attended his funeral defying every difficulty created by the restrictions, but I felt a strong desire to have to be present to greet him and celebrate it together with all those who loved it.
Now I feel the responsibility to continue to disseminate his teaching here in Rome, a city that he loved and that managed to bring together students from all over the world.My goal is to share this wonderful treasure by creating a didactic continuity.For this reason, during the year there will be two six-month workshops lasting three days and two-monthly individual lessons.The workshops will be characterized by the presence of invited teachers with a great experience of the Barry Harris method.