Live Music: Shirley Smart & Maurizio Minardi


Shirley Smart - Cello
Maurizio Minardi - Piano/Accordion

Shirley Smart and Maurizio Minardi’s repertoire spans music from jazz, gypsy jazz, tango and music from North Africa, the Balkans, and Eastern Europe, all re-imagined though jazz-inspired improvisation, as well as original material by both artists.

Shirley Smart is fast becoming known as one of the UK’s most versatile and creative cellists. Originally trained in classical cello at the Guilldhall School of Music, and in Paris and Switzerlsnd, she subsequently moved to Jerusalem, where she remained for 10 years, studying and performing a wide variety of world music from the Mediterranean and Middle Eastern region, as well as being highly involved with the jazz and improvised music scene. Since returning to the UK, she has quickly become known as one of the most creative cellists on the music scene and has worked with many leading jazz and world music groups, including Antonio Forcione, Gilad Atzmon, Neil Cowley, Julian Ferraretto, Maurizio Minardi, Alice Zawadski and Robert Mitchell,as well as leading her own projects.


“…must rank as one of the leading cello improvisers in the UK…’ (The Jazz Mann)
“…Superb cello...”  (Songlines magazine)
“ Three Instrumentalists in One” -  Rhyll Music Club
“ A Must-see performer” – Vortex Jazz Club


Multi-instrumentalist and composer Maurizio Minardi has recorded 9 albums and performed with a number of artists including Carmen Souza, Antonio Forcione, the Royal Shakespeare Company, Georgia Mancio. Maurizio has played in a range of venues and festivals, including BBC London, Pizza Express Jazz Club, the Royal Albert Hall Ignite Series, Upstairs at Ronnie Scott’s, Kings Place Festival, The Vortex, the Apollo Hammersmith, the Lost Theatre, and more.


“ One of the finest pianists on the UK scene” – (Rainlores World of Music)
"...lyrical and touching..." (The Evening Standard)
"...a beautiful album, weaving together jazz, folk and minimalist Classical music - the evocative melodies conjure up lasting images of comedy and pathos." (London Jazz)


Together, Shirley and Maurizio present a highly original evening of diverse music infused with dynamic improvisation and lively communication.

Recent performances have included the Vortex Jazz Club, Old Ford Jazz Club, Brunel Museum, Green Note, Crouch End festival and Harfensommer Festival, Wurzburg in Germany.