Yvonne Monnett, Teaching Associate
Yvonne was born and raised in Providence, Rhode Island. She comes from a very musical family. Her father, the late Raul Cunha, was a professional pianist and band leader. Her mother, Edwana , was a vocalist in the band.
Yvonne started playing the piano at age five under the tutelage of her paternal grandmother, a fine concert pianist who performed on the concert stage in Portugal. and on "live" radio in the U.S.
Yvonne had her first professional "gig" at age 17 as a rehearsal pianist for a dance studio in West Warwick, RI.
In the early seventies she was hired to perform with R.I. society band leader Ralph Stuart. She spent several years working for him. She went on to work with bandleaders Paul Borelli and Tony Cipolla.
She began her study of jazz piano in earnest in 1971 with Diamond Centofanti.
She studied classical voice in the late 1980's with Anna Maria Saritelli.
She is listed in the publication "Who’s Who in R.I. Jazz c. 1925-1988," by Lloyd Kaplan and Robert Petteruti, and has been a member of the American Federation of Musicians since 1971..
Yvonne has played and sung at many of the prominent establishments throughout Southeastern New England including - The SPICED PEAR at NEWPORT’S CHANLER HOTEL, THE GATEHOUSE, CAPRICCIO’S, WESTIN HOTEL, SARDELLA’S , INN AT CASTLE HILL, CAMILLE’S, BILTMORE, PAPARAZZI, WHARF TAVERN GREENVALE VINEYARDS, , MARRIOTT, AMERICA BAR & GRILL, ATLANTIC BEACH CLUB ,HOTEL PROVIDENCE, PARKER HOUSE, BOSTON MUSEUM OF FINE ARTS and the FOGG Museum, to name a few.
In addition, her skills as an accompanist have been sought after by many top notch vocalists, such as - CLAY OSBORNE, BILLY GILMAN, SHAWN MONTEIRO, ANGELA BACCARI, JEFFREY OSBORNE, BOB MAINELLI, STEVE MARVIN, ROSE WEAVER, FRANK D’ARONE AND LENA PRIMA.
She has also worked with international recording artists ART PELOSI, GREG ABATE, DAN MORETTI and Artie Shaw bandleader DICK JOHNSON.
In 2005 Yvonne released her first CD entitled "Thanks For The Memory" In the words of Rick Masimo of the Providence Journal, it is a "collection of high class, black tie jazz...in which Yvonne displays her ability to individualize and imbue each song with artistic and emotional impact. From the smolder on "Slow Boat to China" to the cheek on "Peel Me a Grape", listeners know they are listening to jazz at its finest!"
For the past twelve years she has been a member of the BOB SARACENO ENSEMBLE , entertaining at diverse functions ranging from intimate jazz clubs to presidential galas.
Yvonne also teaches jazz voice as a Teaching Associate in the Applied Music Program at Brown University, Prov. R.I.
OTHER PERFORMANCES INCLUDE
Live appearance on the NBC’s "TODAY" show accompanying Billy Gilman
Performed for former President Bill Clinton at the Gatehouse with Clay Osborne and the Saraceno Ensemble
Played for the National Governor’s Conference at the R.I. State House.