Lorenzo Ferrero was born in Turin (November 17, 1951). He studied music under Massimo Bruni and Enore Zaffiri, and philosophy of esthetics under Gianni Vattimo, at the University of Turin.
He taught composition at the Giuseppe Verdi Conservatory in Milan from 1980 to 2016. He has also taught at St. Mary’s College of Maryland and at the LUISS Business School, a department of the Guido Carli Free International University of Social Studies in Rome.
He has received commissions from numerous festivals and institutions, while his works are frequently performed throughout Europe and North America. He has gained an especially strong following in Italy, Germany, France, Great Britain, Spain, Finland, Russia, the Czech Republic and the United States.
Ferrero’s over one hundred compositions include twelve operas, three ballets, and scores of instrumental and vocal pieces for orchestras and chamber ensembles. Among his best known operas are Marilyn, La figlia del mago (an opera for children), Mare Nostro (opera buffa), Night, Salvatore Giuliano, Charlotte Corday, Le Bleu-blanc-rouge et le Noir (marionette opera, with book by Anthony Burgess), Nascita di Orfeo, La conquista (based on the tragic end of Aztec civilization); renowned pieces include Ferrero’s first Concerto for piano, Triplo Concerto (for violin, cello and piano), La Nueva España (a suite of six symphonic poems), Canzoni d'amore (vocal cycle), Parodia (for chamber ensemble), Ostinato (for six cellos), Glamorama Spies (for flute, clarinet, violin, cello and piano), Capriccio (for piano and string orchestra), Tempi di quartetto (for string quartet), and Franca Florio, regina di Palermo (a ballet in two acts).
Ferrero has collaborated with Carmelo Bene on projects involving theater music and the Biennale Teatro. In 1993 he joined six other composers to write Requiem per le vittime della mafia, which was performed at the Palermo Cathedral and broadcast on RAI 3 TV. In 1994 he completed the orchestration of the third version of Giacomo Puccini’s opera La Rondine, which made its world premiere at Teatro Regio in Torino. In 1997 he composed the music for the opening ceremony of the World Ski Championships in Sestrières.
Ferrero is also an author and translator. His Manuale di scrittura musicale was published by Torino-based EDT in 2007. Moreover, he translated and edited the Italian version of Samuel Adler’s classic The Study of Orchestration (2008).
Over the years, Ferrero has also been involved in the organization of musical events. He has served as artistic director for Festival Puccini in Torre del Lago, Unione Musicale in Torino, and the Verona Arena. In 1999 he was director of Musica 2000, a music fair in Torino; he was co-founder and artistic coordinator of Festa della Musica in Milano (1999-2003); since 2003 he has been general director of Ravello Festival, where he also serves as artistic director for the symphonic section.
From 2007 to 2011 Ferrero sat on the Board of Directors and was Vice President of SIAE, Italy’s copyright authority. As a member of the Italian Union of Composers, Librettists and Authors, he co-founded the European Composer and Songwriter Alliance. Ferrero was president of CIAM (the International Council of Creators of Music) from 2011 to 2017, and today serves as honorary president.