Francesco Cera

Organist & Harpsichordist


The Italian harpsichordist, organist and conductor Francesco Cera, is internationally recognized for his performances of 17th and 18th century keyboard music, and as a leading specialist of Frescobaldi’s keyboard works.

1989-1991 he specializes with L. Ferdinando Tagliavini and Gustav Leonhardt; and gets his diploma from the Amsterdam Conservatory

1991-1994 harpsichordist of the ensemble Il Giardino Armonico – recordings for Teldec and concerts throughout Europe

1996 he founds the Ensemble Arte Musica, specializing in Italian vocal music from Gesualdo and Monteverdi, to the cantatas of the 18th century

since 1990 he has performed solo recitals and as the director of the Ensemble Arte Musica in such venues as Festival of Flanders, Festival Oude Muziek in Utrecht, Resonanzen in Vienna, Baroktage Melk, Philarmonie Köln, Tage Alter Musik in Herne, Lådegard in Oslo, Festival in Maguelone, Abbaye de Saint-Michel en Thiérache, Les Sommets Musicaux in Gstaad, Musica e poesia a San Maurizio in Milan, Accademia Filarmonica in Rome, Festival Monteverdi in Cremona, Bologna Festival, Sagra musicale Malatestiana in Rimini, and on historical organ in Europe, Scandinavia, and the United States

1995-2015 he has collaborated with Diego Fasolis and I Barocchisti. Recordings for Arts, Virgin, and Decca with them

1996-2005 recordings for Tactus, Arts, Tempéraments
– complete works of M.Rossi, T.Merula, B.Storace, A.Valente
– D. Scarlatti: Sonate per clavicembalo 1742
– J. S. Bach: French Suites
– J. S. Bach: Harpsichord Concertos
– Gesualdo: Madrigali libro quarto
– Monteverdi: Lamento di Arianna
– Colonna: Nisi Dominus, Mottetti

2006-2017 recordings for Brilliant Classics
– Scarlatti and the neapolitan song
– Gesualdo: Tenebrae Responsoria
– D’Anglebert: Complete harpsichord works
– Bach: Orgelbüchlein
– Trabaci: Music for organ and harpsichord
– Stradella: Complete string Sinfonias
– Erotica Antiqua – Neapolitan Villanellas
– The Organ at European Courts

In 2019 a seven-CD box set is released for Arcana label (Outhere Music) with the four main keyboard works by Girolamo Frescobaldi interpreted by Francesco Cera on nine priceless instruments

He has collaborated with soloists such as the singers Guillemette Laurens and Letizia Calandra; the violinists Enrico Onofri and Marco Serino; the lutenist and theorbist Francesco Romano

He has held master classes at the Royal Academy of Music in London, Smarano Organ Academy, Piccola Accademia Montisi, Oberlin Conservatory, Yale University, Eastman School of Music in Rochester, Academia de Organo J. Echevarria (Spain), Frescobaldi Akademiet in Grimstad (Norway)

He has been a consultant for the restoration of historical organs in Italy

Francesco Cera holds the chair of harpsichord at the Conservatorio “E.R.Duni” in Matera, and currently teaches at the Conservatorio “A.Pedrollo” in Vicenza