“Angelo is a brilliant jazz talent. His receptivity, seriousness, his ability to execute ideas simple or complex, combined with his love and feel for the substance of jazz reveal why he is an exceptional artist.” — Mulgrew Miller
“Angelo Versace is one of my favorite among the current generation of pianists. His playing possesses everything I look for - beautiful sound, vitality, originality, and heart . . . and he swings!” — Shelly Berg (Dean, Frost School of Music)
“From the moment you first are privileged to hear his superior musicianship, you know that you've been in the presence of true greatness. Though the entire world may never know his name, they will soon know and have a great affinity for his music.” — Khristian Dentley (Songwriter, Producer, and Baritone for Take 6)
Winner of the 2012 Phillips Jazz Piano Competition, Angelo Versace has been described as “a fleet-fingered keyboard dynamo” (Lawrence Budman) and “next star on the jazz scene.” (Dwayne Dolphin)
From humble beginnings in the small town of Indiana, Pennsylvania, Versace’s passion for music has led him all across the globe. His playing has graced the stages of the North Sea Jazz Festival (Netherlands), the New Orleans Jazz Festival (Louisiana), multiple JEN conferences, the Pensacola Jazz Festival (Florida), and the Mellon Jazz Festival (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania). His main musical influences and private teachers include Harold Mabern, Mulgrew Miller, Martin Bejerano, Armen Donelian, and Shelly Berg.
Versace has had the privilege of working with internationally recognized artists: Sean Jones, Brice Winston, Take 6, Jon Faddis, Slide Hampton, Chris Vadala, Roger Humphries, Sammy Figueroa, Wycliffe Gordon, Dave Koz, Tim Ries, Kevin Mahogany, Ignacio Berroa, Gloria Gaynor, Foreigner, Denise Graves, Jeremy Pelt, Dave Douglas, and Chris Potter. In 2005, Versace joined the Dwayne Dolphin Piccolo Bass Band and recorded two albums with the group, “Ming” and “Pretty Girl”. In 2007, he recorded a classical album with Alto Saxophonist Keith Young, “Saxophone Voices from Five Countries”. In 2008, he recorded another album, “Jazz Hymns,” with platinum selling jazz guitarist, Jerry Hahn. He produced and arranged "ENDless" with trumpeter Augie Haas in 2012, and in 2013 appeared on “Khristian 3.0,” an album released in collaboration with Khristian Dentley which featured several of Versace's arrangments. He is currently anticipating the release of his latest recordings both as a leader and with Khristian Dentley.
Immediately out of high school, Versace was accepted on full scholarship to William Paterson University, where he graduated “Summa Cum Laude” with a Bachelor’s Degree in Jazz Performance. Versace then moved to Miami and completed a Master’s degree in Jazz Pedagogy from the University of Miami, also under full scholarship. In the second year of his Master's degree he accepted the Jazz Piano Teaching Assistant Position. In 2010 Versace began a Doctor Musical Arts degree at the University of Miami and completed it in 2013.
Versace has had the opportunity to teach private lessons, ear training classes, improvisation classes, jazz piano classes, various ensembles, jazz composition classes, and piano forums. From 2010-2014 he was on faculty at the Superior Academy of Music, a Miami-based music program. During that time he also held the Adjunct Jazz Piano chair at Broward College. He has also worked closely with the CGCC Community Arts program, Dillard High School, and the Tucson Jazz Institute, all of which have had representation at the prestigious Essentially Ellington Competition.
In August of 2014, Versace accepted a full-time assistant professor position at the University of Arizona as the Director of Jazz.
Versace’s career has included everything from private benefits and events to performances in large concert halls. He has been contracted as a performer, teacher, composer, arranger, producer, music director, and an engraver. From 2009-2013, Versace was a Mancini Fellow and was awarded the piano chair in the Mancini Institute Orchestra, a “multi-genre ‘cross-over’ orchestra” under the direction of Terence Blanchard. Versace’s musical versatility, creative prowess, and dedication set him apart as an artist. His appreciation of musical tradition as well as a unique blend of modern rhythm and harmony continually advance his career.