Karl Leopold Metzenberg
Story Analyst, Local 700 Los Angeles, CA (Ret.)
"Joseph Mastroianni's Chaconne is an engrossing
and exciting tale of guilt, atonement, and realization.
Rich with life-changing events and memorable characters,
it chronicles a young man's coming first against obstacles,
and finally to awareness through life’s lessons
subtle and manifest, wonderful and terrible."
Ed.M., Ph.D., Boston Globe Correspondent, author "I Gotta
Crow" written especially for women.
“Witness the lives of two deeply intentional
men unfold--through friendships, family, passions, tragedies--and
music. What each man allows life to write upon his soul,
and the music of his life, becomes a powerful duet across
time. A privilege to read.”
D.M.A. Professor of Music Theory, Northern Arizona University,
author “The Canons and Fugues of J. S. Bach The Fugues
of the Well-Tempered Clavier.
"Bach’s Chaconne is one of the most beloved
works in music literature. Mastroianni’s Chaconne
retells the story of its composition, proving again the
power of art to comprehend, and transcend, the grief and
inevitable guilt that death brings to those who survive.
A beautiful and helpful story.”
DM.A Music, Professor California State University, Northridge
California specializing in Lute and Guitar.
“A wonderful story is woven around two distinct
periods in history, the Baroque and the 20th century.
Joseph Mastroianni's love for music and especially the
Chaconne of Johann S. Bach reveals the power of music
in dealing with today's struggles and hardships. Tremendous
insight and an enjoyable conception.”
Richard O' Connor
Executive Editor Renaissance Books, retired, Author
"A facinating journey that reveals a life and
Syndicated Columnist, Author
"very interesting and well written."
| Sea Shells
by Rosemarie Fanucchifirstname.lastname@example.org
Book shelves hold Mastroianni’s “Chaconne”
Joseph C. Mastroianni’s accomplishments are impressive.
He’s one of those people whom you meet and admire
for his work on a current project and you then learn
something new about him and are in new awe.
For starters, he is a contributing editor to the magazine
Fly Fishing. He was a professional helicopter pilot.
When an automobile accident resulted in life threatening
injuries he applied grit to endure 10 years of rehabilitation
to recover. He rode a bike from California to Boston.
Recently I learned of his just published book “Chaconne.”
This is how this came about. He heard and fell in love
with Bach’s Chaconne. The music entered his soul
and he was led to study classical guitar which in turn
led him to travel to Madrid where he lived for four
years just to learn the piece.
Chaconne is ever a part of his life. And now, 15 years
later, he has completed his novel honoring the name
of the music.
Joseph applied his life’s experiences of joy,
challenges, ardor, zeal and perseverance to create the
stories in Chaconne. His work is thrilling, gut wrenching,
awe-inspiring, and unrestrained. Those are my words.
And so, here is hot off the press info for you. Learn
about Joseph and Chaconne at: chaconne.us/. You may
purchase the book online or for an autographed copy,
meet Mr. Mastroianni right here in Carpinteria on Oct.
22 at Step One Gallery during ArtWalk. If you can’t
wait that long, on Sept. 24, you may meet him at the
Santa Barbara Book and Author Festival. Be sure to tell
him you read about Chaconne in Sea Shells.
Until next time …
Barbara Independent September 22, 2005|
S.B. BOOK AND AUTHOR FESTIVAL
Mastroianni’s Ode to Bach
S.B. Author Uses Bach’s Music to Drive Modern and
by Darian Bleecher
Chaconne is a tale of two lives intertwined across hundreds
of years through music, adversity, and passion. Santa
Barbara author Joseph Mastroianni artfully weaves a narrative
of fictional protagonist Milo Damiani and Baroque composer
Johann Sebastian Bach, and the tie that ultimately binds
them: Bach’s “Chaconne,” widely considered
the greatest musical composition of all time.
The reader first encounters Milo as a helicopter pilot
on a treacherous
rescue mission. The subsequent chapters trace the events
in Milo’s life leading to that moment. The pain
of loss colors Milo’s youth, leaving him despondent
and angry. His father, a musician and dreamer, abandons
the family when Milo is young. He experiences the devastation
of death at an early age: the first, a childhood friend;
and then, as a teenager, he is party to and holds himself
personally responsible for catastrophic accidents that
take the lives of two little girls. Unable to forgive
himself, Milo’s childhood dreams of flying are stalled
as he finds himself haunted by these tragedies. As he
searches for redemption and forgiveness, and struggles
to make sense of his life, he unearths the resounding
truths he seeks in the music of Johann Sebastian Bach.
Milo’s earliest memory is of his father playing
the “Chaconne,” Bach’s masterpiece for
violin. The music penetrates his soul at an early age,
and though it lies dormant during his childhood, it resurfaces
when he finds himself in desperate need of peace and deliverance.
Through his meditative focus on the “Chaconne,”
Milo divines the answers to his most burning questions
and is finally able to overcome the pain and guilt he
has borne for so long.
In a fictionalized yet historically accurate account of
the life of one of the world’s best-loved composers,
Mastroianni traces Bach’s life from birth to death,
providing a counterpoint to the 20th-century narrative.
Though celebrated from an early age for his musical gifts,
Bach’s was a life deeply affected by death. He lost
both parents at the age of 10, and 10 of his 20 children.
Most devastating, however, was the sudden loss of his
beloved first wife, Maria Barbara. As a boy, the young
prodigy hears the melancholic warble of a chaffinch and
commits the haunting melody to memory. Years later, the
resonant birdsong would become the basis for Bach’s
poignant masterwork, the “Chaconne,” written
in memory of his adored wife as an homage to their deeply
spiritual union crushed by loss.
The life stories of the two men are carefully entwined
in alternating chapters, each punctuated with a comparison
of the two lives or a lesson learned by Milo through Bach’s
music. The connection between the contemporary protagonist
and the 18th-century composer isn’t immediately
obvious—and, in fact, the comparison at times feels
strained—but ultimately becomes clear as the modern-day
hero finds Bach’s masterwork a continuous source
of solace and inspiration, eventually allowing the piece
to guide his destiny.
In creating the character of Milo Damiani, Mastroianni
drew deeply upon his own life experiences. Similar to
Milo, Bach’s “Chaconne” is an integral
force in Mastroianni’s life. A professional helicopter
pilot forced into retirement by a devastating accident,
Mastroianni fell in love with classical guitar in 1972
and spent several years studying guitar in Madrid for
the sole purpose of learning to play the “Chaconne.”
He is a contributing editor to Fly Fishing New England
and has published a book of poetry. Chaconne, a 15-year
labor of love, is his first novel. Mastroianni will be
at the Santa Barbara Book and Author Festival on September
24, and at Step One Gallery in Carpinteria during ArtWalk
on October 22.
| Woburn-born author appears
at Woburn library on Sunday|
By STAFF REPORTS
WOBURN - Woburn native and author Joseph C. Mastroianni,
who has written "Chaconne the Novel," will be
at the Woburn Public Library to dedicate a fund for the
purchase of childrens books on Sunday Nov. 20, at 2 p.m.
Mastroianni visited Woburn in recent days to meet with
Woburn Public Library Director Kathleen O'Doherty and
some Friends of the Woburn Public Library in anticipation
of the Sunday signing.
"We're already looking at a second printing,"
said Mastroianni on his visit to Woburn in recent days.
Mastroianni noted: "As a boy in Woburn, the Woburn
Public Library public library was my sanctuary. Now
it's pay back time."
A Woburn H.S. graduate in 1959, Mastroianni now lives
in Santa Barbara, California. Damian Press Books is
the publisher of the novel.
Mastroianni has established a fund at the Woburn Public
Library for the purchase of children's books in honor
of his recently diseased sister, Lois Capua.
The evolution of "Chaconne the Novel" is
as riveting as the narrative of the story.
It is a tribute to the author's skill in blending the
stories, cultures, and passions of two men who lived
centuries apart, but who shared the passion for one
monumental piece of music, Johann Sebastian Bach's haunting
The culmination of decades of research and 20 years
of classical study of the guitar have contributed layers
of detail and richness to the writing that embraces
the reader and submerges them within the pages to reveal
the magic of music and the power of will.
As the book hits the book stores and elsewhere, there
are a schedule of events to bring it to the public's
attention. Originally, 1,000 books were published.
Mastroianni is a contributing editor to Fly Fishing
New England, and writes essays on the history of fly-fishing.
His research brought to light the contributions of a
woman who lived and wrote in the 1400s, one hundred
years prior to Isaac Walton, who is universally accepted
as the father of fly-fishing. The Woburn native has
also published a book of poetry and is working on another.
Originally a working barber in North Woburn, he became
a professional helicopter pilot. Later, he suffered
life-threatening injuries in a pedestrian accident in
New York City when an automobile struck him forcing
retirement 1988. He spent 10 years rehabilitating from
In 1999 Mastroianni celebrated his recovery by realizing
a childhood dream, a bike ride from California to Woburn
which was reported nearly daily in the Daily Times Chronicle.
Three of his six children were the support team for
the trek to raise funds for the National Children's
Cancer Society and The American Heart Association. Mayors
and governors across America, including now-President
George W. Bush, cited him for his effort. Congress has
also recognized his achievement.
Being overcome by the classical guitar in 1972, Mastroianni
studied four years in Madrid for the sole purpose of
playing Bach's "Chaconne." He has spent the
past 15 years writing this novel and playing the "Chaconne."
An "Events Schedule" appears on the book
A "meet the author event" is being promoted
and groups can be scheduled either by contacting the
Mastroianni on the book site, or using the web site.
Comments on the "Chaconne the Novel" have
already come to the forefront.
Among them are:
* Tim Smith D.M.A. Professor of Music Theory, Northern
Arizona University "Chaconne is really two novels
in one, a tale of two lives separated by centuries in
time. It is a love story - Milo Damiani's love for life,
and the music of J. S. Bach. Joseph Mastroianni's masterpiece
rings true, like one who saw it happen."
* Jill Hackett Ed.M., Ph.D., Boston Globe Correspondent,
author "I Gotta Crow" says it is a witness
of the lives of two deeply intentional men unfold through
friendships, family, passions, tragedies, and music.
What each man allows life to write upon his soul, and
the music of his life, becomes a powerful duet across
time. A privilege to read."
* Darian Bleecher, Santa Barbara Independent "Santa
Barbara author Joseph Mastroianni artfully weaves a
narrative of fictional protagonist Milo Damiani and
Baroque composer Johann Sebastian Bach, and the tie
that ultimately binds them."
(Chaconne is available in local bookstores, or online
at: www.chaconne.us and Amazon.com)
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A sure Candidate for the BOOK SENSE book
of the year award.