Born to musician parents in Pernambuco, American-Brazilian cellist Leonardo Altino began his musical studies at the age of five and gave his first performance at age eight. At eleven he gave his first performance with orchestra performing the Saint-Saens Concerto No. 1. His national breakthrough came at fourteen when Leonardo was the youngest winner at the Jovens Concertistas Brasileiros, a prestigious competition in Rio de Janeiro, which led to performances with every major orchestra and hall in his home country. At nineteen Leonardo was the first prize winner at the International Cello Competition Dr. Luis Segal in Viña Del Mar, Chile, and has since appeared in concerts in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Denmark, Greece, Italy, South Korea, Taiwan, Uruguay, Venezuela and the United States.
Praised by the Strad Magazine for his “exceptional musical intelligence and an exceptionally cultivated sound,” Leonardo has performed with orchestras such as the Boston Symphony, Odense Symphony, Wisconsin Chamber, Filarmonica de Minas Gerais, Carmel Symphony, Memphis Symphony, Montgomery Symphony, Symphony Pro Musica, Sinfonica Brasileira, Sinfônica Nacional do Brasil, Sinfonica Nacional de Chile, Sinfônica de São Paulo, and the Virtuosi Festival orchestras among many others, under the direction of conductors such as Elezar de Carvalho, Isaac Karabtchevisky, Carl Saint-Clair, Andrew Sewell, David Bowden and Fabio Mechetti. An avid chamber musician, he has collaborated with Monique Duphil, Victor Asuncion, Ilya Gringolts, Oleh Krysa, Giora Schmidt, Antonio Meneses, Fanz Helmerson, the Ceruti and Miró string quartets. Highlights of the upcoming season include return performances with the Filarmonica de Minas Gerais in Brazil and the Odense Symphony in Denmark performing Prokofiev’s Sinfonia Concertante, and with the Columbus Symphony Orchestra performing Brahms’ Double Concerto with his wife, violinist Soh-Hyun Park Altino.
A dedicated teacher and mentor, Leonardo has taught in many festivals around the world, including the Brevard Music Center, Masterworks Festival, Academia y Festival Nuevo Mundo in Venezuela, Festival de Inverno Campos do Jordão and Festival Virtuosi in Brazil. Leonardo studied at the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston and the Detmold Musihöchschule in Germany, and his main teachers include Francisco Pino, Aldo Parisot, Laurence Lesser, Marcio Carneiro and Suren Bagratuni. He was a recipient of the Montgomery Symphony Orchestra Fellowship where he served as artist-in-residence, and he was on the faculty at the University of Memphis for thirteen years. Currently he is an Associate Lecturer in Music at the Wheaton College Conservatory of Music where he teaches cello and chamber music. Leonardo resides in Wheaton, Illinois, with his wife, violinist Soh-Hyun, and son David.