Alberto Colla was born in Alessandria, Italy, in 1968 (July 2).
There, he graduated from the Antonio Vivaldi Conservatory, majoring in composition under Carlo Mosso, and also studied piano, choral music and choir conducting. He went on to further studies in composition with Azio Corghi at the Goffredo Petrassi Academy in Parma and the Santa Cecilia International Academy in Rome, the recipient of a SIAE grant.
His 2001 opera Il processo
was the winner of the Verdi Celebration, and since 2004 has been performed on numerous occasions in Germany. Colla’s music has been broadcast on radio and television in Europe, Scandinavia, Israel, the United States, Russia and Canada, and has been recorded in Italy, Austria, Canada and Japan. His scores have been performed by many orchestras, including the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the Mozarteum Orchestra of Salzburg, the Santa Cecilia Academy Orchestra, the Bayerischer Rundfunk Symphony Orchestra, the Juilliard Symphony Orchestra, the Albany Symphony Orchestra, and the Île de France National Orchestra.
In 2002 Luciano Berio commissioned Colla’s Somnium, a composition for choir and symphony orchestra for the opening of Renzo Piano’s Auditorium in Rome. In 2003 the Estonian National Symphony, conducted by Olari Elts, performed the world premiere of Colla’s Starlights in Tallin. In 2004 a monographic concert featured Colla’s music at the Moscow Autumn Contemporary Music Festival. That same year, the Albany Symphony Orchestra commissioned Le ceneri del Vesuvio
(“The Ashes of Vesuvius”). In 2005 he came out with small orchestra adaptations of Giuseppe Verdi’s Aida
, complete versions.
In 2006 the Italian Episcopal Conference and the Verona Arena Foundation commissioned his Resurrexi
, a grand oratorio for narrator, five soloists, three choirs and symphony orchestra for the third Italian Ecclesial Conference held in Verona. Resurrexi
was then performed in Milano in November 2006, in Rome in 2007, and in Macerata in 2008.
In 2011 the Albany Symphony Orchestra performed the world premiere of Colla’s piece Nocturnal Tears
, for three guitars and orchestra. Colla was appointed associate composer of the Île de France National Orchestra in Paris for 2012-2013.
The same orchestra commissioned world premieres of his Symphonie des prodiges
(Symphony No. 3), performed in April 2013 at Centre Culturel Saint-Ayoul; Ouverture pour l’éveil des peuples, performed in 2014 (followed by repeat performances in France); Sérénade sur la modulation des vents
, performed at the 2016 Presences Festival in Paris.
In 2015 Alberto Colla won Brigham Young University’s Barlow Prize and received the commission for his fourth symphony, Ode by the Earth, performed in a world premiere in Bejing by the Guiyang Symphony Orchestra in May 2019.
In 2017 he wrote the opera Delitto e dovere
(“Crime and Duty”), which was commissioned by the 60th edition of the Spoleto Festival, where it was directed by Paolo Gavezzeni and Piero Maranghi.
Colla currently teaches composition at the Luigi Canepa Conservatory in Sassari, Italy.
His works have been published by Ricordi, Casa Musicale Sonzogno, and Universal Wien.