Iorio is the violist of the English
String Quartet and the Executive and Artistic Director of the London
Festival of Chamber Music.
He was born in Rome, Italy, where
he studied law as well as violin and viola, completing both his university
degree and conservatoire diploma in 1962. Encouraged by his teacher, Remy
Principe, he chose to become a professional violist and soon joined two
well-known chamber groups based in Rome, Solisti di Roma and Quartetto
In 1965 he moved for the first time
to London where, with the help of a British Council Scholarship, he studied
for two years at the Royal Academy of Music with Gwynne Edwards. There
was also another reason for his presence in London: the English violinist
Diana Cummings, whom he had met in Italy,
at a summer music course in Taormina!
On his return to Rome he studied
with Bruno Giuranna, at the same time working as a freelance orchestral
and session player. Together with Diana Cummings, now his wife, he founded
the Cummings-Iorio String Quartet and the Gruppo Roma Musicale.
In 1971 Luciano and Diana moved
to London, where for a short period they played in the Cummings String
Quartet with Diana's brothers Julian, second violin, and Douglas, cello.
Luciano was then offered the principal viola position with the famous Italian
chamber orchestra I Solisti Veneti, with whom he toured widely. The touring
did not cease when Luciano left the orchestra in 1975, for then he and
Diana founded the Cummings String Trio and later joined the English String
Quartet, ensembles which have toured widely in Great Britain, Europe and
the USA and have made many recordings. Luciano has also been very much
in demand as a freelance orchestral player, playing with some of the major
London symphony orchestras and holding the position of principal viola
with several chamber orchestra. He has also been active as a commercial
Luciano has played concertos on
both viola and viola d'amore, and in 1980 he gave the first performance
of the Viola Concerto (Second Night Journey under the Sea) written for
him by Douglas Young, and in 1982 of the Sinfonia Concertante for viola
and cello by Wilfred Josephs. He teaches viola at the Junior Department
of the Royal Academy of Music in London, and at Eton College, and has taught
at many music courses in this country and abroad. He has been also an active
member of the Musicians'Union, and from 1993 until 1995 he was the first
elected chairman of the Freelance Orchestral Section Committee.
In 1995 he founded the London Festival
of Chamber Music, of which he is not only Executive and Artistic Director,
but also one of its main performers, having taken part in all the Festival
Luciano and Diana have three children:
Damian, born in 1972, has started a successful career as conductor; Simon
(1974) is studying to become an operatic tenor; Camilla (1978) uses her
talents to create hair-styles!