Carlo Aonzo performs regularly in Europe and the United States, where he has established himself as a principal proponent of the classical mandolin. Graduating with honors from the conservatory in Padua, he has played with several musical institutions such as the Philharmonic Orchestra of La Scala in Milan and the Nashville Chamber Orchestra. Among his awards are the "Vivaldi" first prize at the Vittorio Pitzianti National Mandolin Competition in Venice, and first prize at the Walnut Valley National Mandolin Contest in Winfield, Kansas. He has recorded a concert video on the history of the solo mandolin repertory for Mel Bay (Carlo Aonzo: Classical Mandolin Virtuoso). His CDs include Serenata (Acoustic Music, Germany), Traversata, (Acoustic Disc, USA) and Vivaldi - Concerti per mandolino, and Kaze, with guitarist Katsumi Nagaoka, which they performed on their concert tour of Japan in 2007. He leads the annual Manhattan Mandolin Workshop in New York and in 2006 he began the International Italian Academy for the Mandolin. As a researcher, he has worked on the origins of his instrument. He has collaborated with the New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians and has edited books on music for Bèrben publishers. He has given presentations on the iconography of the mandolin at institutions such as Boston University and the National Instrument Museum in Rome. Elena Buttiero earned her degree in piano from the Cuneo Conservatory. She has performed in many cities throughout Italy, Switzerland, Germany, Ireland, France and Serbia. She recorded two CDs, on which she plays the harp, with the Birkin Tree: Continental Reel (Robi Droli, Cgd East, 1996) and A Cheap Present (Felmay, 1998), which is distributed in Europe, Asia and America. In the field of music pedagogy, she has published a solfeggio method, Il Centone (Caruso Ed. Musicali, 2006). Since 1990 she has been a piano instructor on the faculty of the Scuola Media ad indirizzo musicale di Savona (Savona's music-oriented middle school).