At the age of eight, Aniello Desiderio performed in public for the first time, displaying such outstanding gifts that music critics started to speak of him as an “enfant prodige”, “wunderkind”, “a genius”, “the Orpheus of the guitar”, “a guitarist of the century”, and “il Fenomeno”.
He quickly established himself as a concert artist with a distinct voice when he won 18 first place International Awards in both national and international competitions. Notable among them are 1st Prize and Special Prize for the best interpretation of South American music at the International Guitar Competition in Havana, Cuba (1988); “Neapolitan of the Year'' Award in Italy (1988); 1st Prize and Special Prize of the best interpretation of Tarrega’s music at the
International Francisco Tarrega Competition, Benicasim, Spain (1992), and 1st Prize at the International “Guerrero'' Competition, Madrid, Spain (1994).
He performs regularly as a recitalist in North and South Americas, Europe, Asia, and Africa, in the most important theaters of the world including Carnegie Hall, Tchaikovsky Concert Hall in Moscow, Palau de La Musica, Mozarteum, Munich Philarmonie, Koelner Philarmonie, Alte Opera, Tonhalle, Teatro delle Palme, Radio France, Die Gloke, Istanbul Philharmonic, Berlin Philarmonie, Opera House Wien, and Concertgebouw Amsterdam.
Frequent soloist with orchestras, his recent appearances include performances with the Oregon Symphony (USA), Pro Musica Columbus (OH, USA), Bavarian Chamber Orchestra and Romulo Larrea (Bandoneon) Tango con Passion (Germany), Zagreb Symphony, Istanbul State Symphony Orchestra (Turkey), RSO Berliner, Deutche Kammerphilarmonie, Alessandro Scarlatti, I Pomeriggi Musicali, Bach Collegium, Wiener Kammerorchester, and Kremerata Baltica with Gidon Kremer, as well as an invitation by legendary violinist and conductor Salvatore Accardo to the “Settimane di Musica Internazionali” in Naples, Italy, where he performed with Moscow Virtuosi Chamber Orchestra lead by Vladimir Spivakov.
He received the “Artist in Residence Award 1999” from the German Radio DLF at Musikfest Bremen together with Gidon Kremer. The same year, the German Television BR/TV produced a music documentary and portrait of Mr. Desiderio in Naples which was broadcast throughout Europe.
He was invited to the 70th birthday Gala of Maestro Lorin Maazel by the Bavarian Radio and Television station. The world famous painter Ernst Fuchs invited him to perform at his Museum-Villa in Wien and in 2010, he performed the “Concerto Madrigal” by Juaquin Rodrigo with the legendary classical guitarist Angel Romero.
An avid chamber music with multiple ongoing projects for decades, his guitar duo project with renowned soloist Zoran Dukic, often dubbed as “From A to Z” Duo in the USA, has been a favorite of numerous European festivals since early 1990s and frequently reinvited to perform at major international venues including Palau de la Musica in Barcelona Spain.
Together with his brothers Gennaro and Gaetano Desiderio, and other famous Neapolitan musicians, he founded the group Passione Napoletana, performing the highly emotional music of his home town Naples: “Serenate, Tanghi, Danze, Canzoni e Tarantelle Napoletane.”
In fall of 2009, he created his latest recording project: “Quartetto Furioso” with violinist Gennaro Desiderio, pianist Gaetano Desiderio and percussionist Salvatore Minale playing a program consisting of Vivaldi’s “The Four Seasons” and Piazzolla’s “Four Seasons of Buenos Aires” and realized the production of a CD of this project for the famous German label Termidor, which includes singer Sabine Mayer and GrammyⓇ Awards winner Cuban-American alto saxophonist, clarinetist and composer Paquito D’ Rivera.
He was the co-founder together with Jurgen Nimbler of "World Guitar Ensemble" which featured a roster of internationally acclaimed and sought after classical guitarists including Zoran Dukic, David Tanenbaum, Thomas Muller Pering, Costas Cotsiolis, Gyan Riley, Olaf Van Gonnissen, Laura Young, Peppino D'Agostino, Duo Kaltchev, and Pablo Marquez.
Between 2018 and 2019, he was the Ambassador of Eurostrings (aka European Guitar Festivals collaborative) featuring 20 guitar festivals all around Europe where he played recitals and gave masterclasses to the winners of all 20 competitions. In addition, he gave the european premiere of “The Walls” by Sergio Assad for solo guitar and guitar orchestra. The piece was performed in 2021 by Yo-Yo Ma in a version rearranged by Sergio Assad for Solo Cello and guitars featuring the most famous guitar players in the world including GrammyⓇ awards winner David Russell.
He has recorded for Deutsche Grammophon, Frame, Waku Music, Koch-Universal, Adoro Records, Brilliant Classic, Accelerando Music Production, and since 2018 he is recording for GuitarCoop label.
A champion of new music and often referred to as the musician of musicians, he has inspired renowned guitarist John McLaughlin to chose him for the european premier of his Concerto “Thieves and Poets”. Other composers who have written new works for him include Roland Dyens, Stephen Goss, Dale Kavanagh, Carlo Domeniconi, Simone Iannarelli, the late Angelo Gilardino and Georg Schimtz (director of Koblenz Festival and Honorary Professor at Mainz University, Germany).
In high demand as a teacher, he was the concert artist and professor in residence from 2004 to 2012 at the International Guitar Academy in Koblenz (Germany) and from 2012 the guitar professor at University of music at S. Giacomantonio of Cosenza and Gesualdo da Venosa of Potenza in Italy. For two years in a row he was invited to give master classes at Internationale SommerAkademie Universitat Mozarteum (Salzburg, Austria).
His students are today’s brightest and most promising emerging concert artists of the new generation all around the world as well as often winners of the most prestigious guitar competitions in the world. They include Artyom Dervoed, Pavel Shamshura, Carlotta Dalia, Andrea Roberto, Nino D'Amico, Elia Portarena, Eleonora Perretta, Cristina Galietto, and Nicola Montella among many others.
Mr. Desiderio graduated with honors from the Conservatory of Music in Alessandria, Italy in 1992. He is currently the professor of guitar at University of Music at Domenico Cimarosa of Avellino (Italy). He is the worldwide Artist Ambassador for D’Addario Strings.