Paul Buono, DMA
Lecturer in Music
Director of the Jazz Ensemble
B.M., University of Massachusetts at Amherst, Jazz Studies (piano)
M.Mus., Aaron Copland School of Music, Queens College, City University of New York, Jazz Studies
J.D., Western New England University School of Law
Teaching and Performance
I began my musical studies as a classical pianist and later discovered my love of jazz. After moving to New York City I was fortunate to play with some of the best players on the jazz scene, such as Wynton Marsalis, Antonio Hart, and Lage Lund. While in NYC I performed in a variety of different settings: jazz, pop/rock, musical theater, classical chamber ensembles, and contemporary dance. As a musical director working for Princess and Cunard Cruise Lines I traveled to some of the most exotic locales such as Bora Bora, Tahiti, New Zealand, and Alaska. Upon returning to NYC, I served as musical director and sideman for various artists appearing on the NBC TV show "The Voice," including a tour with Javier Colon and Maroon 5 on the "OverExposed World Tour" throughout North, Central, and South America, performing for crowds as large as 35,000.
My approach to teaching is to help students understand and create music at any level, beginner through advanced. I do this by selecting musical examples that reflect students' interests, using technology to help students develop modern-day music-making skills, and using project-based learning so that students complete individual tasks which culminate in a final work product. My goal is to demystify some of the seemingly complex aspects of music performance and music theory using so that students feel excited to continue their own musical pursuits.
Teaching students at Assumption College is a great job! I love interacting with students who want to discover new music or be introduced to the classics. Directing the jazz ensemble is a unique joy in that it allows me to create a new program of music each semester and work with students on very technical issues on their individual instrument and within the various instrument sections. "Jazz" has become an umbrella term, encompassing a large variety of music, and my approach with the jazz band has been to treat it as a contemporary ensemble that explores all styles of improvisational-based music.