Amy Denio

Amy Denio (rhymes with ‘Ohio’) is based in Seattle Washington, and is an award-winning singer, composer, multi-instrumentalist, improviser, record producer and recording engineer. Nominated into the Seattle Jazz Hall of Fame in 2015, she is a
self-taught musician ~ her parents both played jazz bass. Her main instruments are voice, accordion, alto sax, clarinet, electric guitar, bass, found sound, and theremin.
She has been producing music in her own Spoot Studios since she was a teenager, and founded Spoot Music, her record label and publishing company in 1986. Since then, has composed, recorded and produced more than 300 compositions, releasing dozens of solo and collaborative recordings on Spoot Music and other record labels from America and beyond.
In January 2018 she was commissioned by film distributor Kino Lorber to create a soundtrack for the silent film ‘Daughter of the Law’ (Grace Cunard, 1921).
In November 2017 Truth Is Up For Grabs, her new work for 20-piece chamber ensemble and video projection was premiered at the Chapel Performance Space in Seattle. Based on current events, poetry by Pablo Neruda and the political economy of war, this major project was funded in part by 4Culture.
Aside from playing in Balkan rock band Kultur Shock since 1999, in 2017 she began collaboration with their lead singer, Srdjan ‘Gino’ Jevdjevic on The Light, a multi-media opera about Nikola Tesla. The first act of The Light premiered at On The Boards in Seattle in June.
Also in 2017 she co-produced 2 new recordings by her all-women sax quartet The Tiptons Sax Quartet, and released her 10th solo recording The Big Embrace in October.
She has enjoyed fellowships in County Mayo, Ireland (Artist Trust) and in Umbertide, Italy (Civitella Ranieri). She has received two Bessie Awards (NYC) for her soundtracks for modern dance. She received the Mayor’s Award in Seattle in 1990 for her artistic vision.
Since 1988 she has collaborated with international musicians at festivals, churches, schools, prisons and mercury mines throughout East & West Europe and North America, as well as in Taiwan, Japan, Hong Kong, India, Brazil, Bolivia and Argentina.
Denio has taught creative music workshops in universities, youth and art centers and prisons in Italy, Belgium, Austria, Germany, Bolivia and throughout North America.
Not constrained to music, she is also a photographer, documentary film maker, and nascent writer, and recently created an interactive public ‘Sonic Bench’, now on permanent exhibit on Vashon Island, Washington.
She’s been commissioned by Kino Lorber, Pacific Science Center, Berkeley Symphony, Italian National Radio, New York Festival of Song, Relache Ensemble, and dozens of modern dance choreographers, theater companies, film makers and radio. These works have been seen and heard at Carnegie Hall, the Brooklyn Academy of Music, Seattle Town Hall, Detroit Institute of Art, Venice Biennale, Roman Theater Trieste, and on top of 3 Metro Busses in Seattle.
In February 2014 she presented her compositions at the Teatro Municipal and Thelonius Club in La Paz, Bolivia in collaboration with excellent local musicians.
Denio often collaborates with choreographer Pat Graney, whose most recent work ‘Girl Gods’ received two New York City Bessie Awards in 2016. In 2003 she composed the soundtrack for the feature film ‘Naked Proof’, which premiered at the Seattle International Film Festival, and was claimed ‘Best Undistributed Film’ by the Village Voice (NYC). In 1997 she won the prestigious New York City ‘Bessie’ Award for her soundtrack for ‘Sky Down,’ commissioned by David Dorfman Dance. Her piece ‘Dishwasher’ was included in the John Cage exhibit at the 1993 Venice Biennale. She has also scored several award-winning animated films by Thomas Edward.
She is a founding member of The Entropics, The Tiptons Sax Quartet, Tone Dogs, (ec) Nudes, FoMoFlo, The Danubians, Petunia, Quintetto alla Busara, Die Resonanz, and the accordion quartet Hell’s Bellows! (US). She has played in Bosnian group Kultur Shock since 1999. She has been collaborating with Latin American duo Correo Aereo since 2003.
Denio has received grants and fellowships to create new work from NEA, Meet The Composer, Pew Charitable Trust, Seattle Office of Arts and Cultural Affairs, 4Culture, Washington State Arts Commission, Arts Link, Arts International, Artist Trust, Civitella Ranieri and from various philanthropists.

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