Her mother is a pianist and Music teacher, Verdiana began studying violin at the age of four at Fiesole’s School of Music, also joining the Boy Sopranos’ Choir directed by Joan Yakkey.
From the age of four until she was eleven, she also followed ballet studies, while also persuing the field of contemporary dance but ended up working exclusively with music.
She immediately displayed remarkable skills when it came to playing and singing; in some choir concerts she was the solo voice.
She completed her fifth year studying violin at Florence’s Luigi Cherubini Conservatory, which she later abandoned due to her refusal to give in to academic pressures and family expectation and in favour of artistic and expressive encouragement.
During high school she develops a passion for theatre, attending Stefano Massini and Chiara Macinai’s lab, the latter an actress and director who will deeply influence her relationship with the stage. She returned for a season in the Polyphonic Choir directed by Joan Yakkey.
She followed labs and theatre apprenticeships, but with the initial idea of attending a national theatre school.
She entered the hard rock band ‘Nativa’ as a singer, for which she created the first Italian tracks with the aid of keyboards. The group became ‘Margaret’s Crime’ and after one successful live show Verdiana left Florence and moved to Palermo, bringing with her a demo, a collection of piano and voice songs in English. She started experimenting by employing her voice in unique and unconventional ways, developing her own brand of piano vocal accompaniment which she approached as a self-learner. It’s during her stay in Palermo that she met artists who encouraged her to follow the path of songwriting: her live shows varied from a piano and voice exhibition, to collaborating with other composers and accompanying dance exhibitions. During this period she was performing with the electronic background music of Sergio Bonfiglioli.
Upon returning to Florence in 2010, she met guitarist Antonio Bacchi and percussionist Fabio Chiari, with whom she rearranged the tracks that ended up in Verdiana Raw’s debut album, 2012’s ‘Metaxy’, released under Ark Records and mixed by Filippo Panichi.
The subtle, metaphysical yet intimate atmosphere coupled with the experimental vocals reflect the meaning of the title, a Platonic interregnum between ‘gods and men, wisdom and madness’. Despite the musical market’s need for labels, Verdiana avoided flattening her material: in the LP there are instrumental tracks (Intro, Outro, Escaping from the guards, Ascending to the moon) and songs in various languages: Italian (Corvus Psychè) and in French (a reinterpretation of Guillame Apollinaire’s Poem ‘La Loreley’).
Verdiana Raw became a recipient in which various disciplines met; every exhibition was different.
She took part in the multimedia project of the electroacoustic composer Alessandra Panerai, singing the words to Giovanni della Croce’s Noche Oscura with music composed by the band ‘Gargamella’.
She met Teresa Maria Partenope Vitelli, an Art Brut expert, and she became passionate about the discipline defined by Jean DuBuffet. The collaboration was spontaneous thanks also to common tributes to artists like Sarah Kane, Alda Merini and Dino Campana.
Teresa created videos for some live performances where images of artworks belonging to the current are the protagonists. The partnership with Vitelli in 2015 brought forth the foundation of the Association of Social Promotion M.A.B., which stands for Museo Art Brut Firenze.
In 2012 she began studying Music Therapy in Florence’s Center for Artistic and Musical Studies, within a study plan organized by Project Shir, that she concluded in 2015 with a thesis on her internship in RSA for unself-sufficient elders.
Some concerts began opening up to contemporary dance; Verdiana got dancers involved, to which she asked to improvise on tracks of their choice, or by preparing choreographies without her knowing beforehand the style adopted, parallel works fusing only at the moment of the exhibition.
The formation accompanying her varied; for the gig at Siena’s Corte dei Miracoli, Nicola Savelli replaced Bacchi by manipulating the voice in real time, and in 2013 during the event ‘Il Rumore del Lutto’ (lit.: The Noise of Grief) in Parma she added her own percussion to Fabio’s; in Bologna Filippo Panichi added a layer of noise and electronica to the piano and voice gig.
In 2013 performer, choreographer and actress-dancer Luciana Stefani joined Verdiana, creating props, dreamy costumes and movements recalling Tanzheater and Butoh. She wrote with her and took part to her first performance ‘Controluce’, for which she created the namesake black and white video.
It’s through PerelandraTeatro that she approached acting once more, by participating in ‘OdisseaPunk’ in 2013 and ‘SoulAsylum’ in 2015, both written by Francesco Barilli and directed by Chiara Macinai. In 2014 she played at the Wave Gotik Treffen in Lipsia. In the summer of 2015, the first performance entirely conceived by Verdiana Raw was staged at Anconella Park’s Q3 in Florence for M.A.B.
Titled ‘De-Lìberati’, the sound engineered by Luigi Maria Menella, at Luciana Stefani’s dance center and filmed by Sergio Morozzi: how can we distance ourselves from our thoughts without losing our identity?
Meanwhile Verdiana gave birth twice: to her firstborn Leon and to her second album, ‘Whales know the Route’ (PippolaMusic) with the artistic production of Paolo Favati (Pankow). In the album Erika Giansanti’s viola is added.
Three the clips taken from Metaxy: Dining Alone by Francesco Sonnati, Corvus Psychè by MalandrinoFilmStudio, La Loreley by Massimiliano Boldrini. From Whales: Time is circular by Andreas Bucovaz and On the road to Thelema, drawn by Roberto Del Monte.
She has a passion for videoart and writing, which she nurtures during her spare time. In the website you can check out the controversial results on her website.
She composed the soundtrack for the movie ‘Vitrum’ directed by Marco Cei.
She dresses (badly) mostly in black, white or red, she cuts her hair and then she freaks out because she wants it long, she’s a tenacious spiritual researcher, and she reads Jessica Fletcher’s Nonciclopedia page for laughs.
She loves nature, the sea, the night sky, whales and Leon; she’s scared of seagulls, lifts and human stupidity, especially her own; like most clumsy girls, she wanted to be a ballerina . She’s convinced she’s a dromomaniac.