Andrea Damiani studied lute with Diana Poulton, Anthony Bailes and Hopkinson Smith. He graduated in lute at the Bari Conservatory and at the Royal College of Music in London.
Convinced since the beginning of his activity that the study of historical performance practice, combined with a profound musical sensitivity, can lead to convincing musical results, he has developed over the years his own method of study and teaching that tries to discover and highlight the most appropriate technical and executive peculiarities to the ages and the various instruments: all this as an alternative to a common vision that tends to identify a single technique to be applied to the most disparate styles.
Furthermore the passion for research on the history and literature of the lute led him to discover new musical sources and to realize some record projects: for the label E lucevan le stelle, he recorded two CDs: J’ay pris amour, dedicated to the cordiform manuscript preserved in the Oliveriana Library of Pesaro, considered the most important source of lute music before Petrucci’s prints; and Folias, music from seventeenth-century manuscript sources of central Italy for guitar, theorbo and lute, including a manuscript recently found in the Marche containing unpublished songs by guitarist Giovanni Paolo Foscarini. Moreover, for the Stradivarius he has recorded a program from Il Fronimo by Vincenzo Galilei. His latest solo CD, Viaggio musicale, is a journey through the history of the lute and the guitar.
An intense concert activity led him to play in the most important Italian and foreign festivals. As a soloist he holds numerous recitals with a repertoire ranging from Italian Renaissance and Baroque to the authors of the ‘700 German (J.S. Bach and S.L. Weiss)
As a specialist in the creation of the basso continuo on arcutiuto and on the theorbo he took part in numerous opera productions collaborating with directors such as Gabriele Ferro, Marcello Panni, Alan Curtis, Sergio Vartolo, Hervet Niquet, John Nelson. He was part of the ‘Concerto Italiano’ group directed by R. Alessandrini, with whom he played in major European festivals and in the United States.
He has made radio recordings for the main European broadcasters (RAI, BBC, ORTF, WDR, etc.) and record companies for Erato, Harmonia Mundi, MR Classics, Philips, Arcana, Naxos, Symphonia, Tactus and Opus 111.
Always passionate teacher, he exposed his teaching principles in the Method for Renaissance lute published by the publishing house Ut-Orpheus of Bologna, which is considered a reference text in this field. His teaching activity has seen him engaged as a teacher at numerous international courses in early music (Erice, Cini Foundation of Venice, Chiusi della Verna, Lanciano); from 1985 to 2007 he taught at the Summer Course of Ancient Music of Urbino organized by F.I.M.A .; from 2003 to 2004 at the summer courses organized by the S. Cordero Institute in Pamparato.
He holds the chair of lute at the Santa Cecilia Conservatory in Rome.
He regularly holds seminars on the history and performance practice of the lute: among the most recent those of the ‘G. Peri ’of Reggio Emilia and the Conservatories of Pesaro, Florence and Naples.
Since April 2007 he has been president of the Italian Foundation for Ancient Music, an “historic” association in the field of popularizing early music in Italy and promoter of the international courses in Urbino