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A graduate of Alhambra High School, JOHN SCHIAVO received a full scholarship to Juilliard, where he was the principal bass in the Juilliard Orchestra. He performed with the Cincinnati Symphony and Cincinnati Pops with Max Rudolf, Thomas Schippers, and Erich Kunzel, surrounding a stint in the military in which he served as a chaplain's assistant, bandsman, and chorister. He received his bachelor's degree from the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music and his master's degree from Cal State L.A., where he taught bass for nine years. He has published arrangements for bass and piano of music by Rossini, Paganini (whose grave he visited in Parma), Sousa, Liszt, and Katchaturian. Schiavo joined the Los Angeles Philharmonic in 1975.
Among his most memorable Philharmonic moments is a cruise with Zubin Mehta for a video about music on the Mediterranean. Eddie Albert and his wife Margot were also on the cruise, and Schiavo toured Rome with them. Schiavo had to return to the ship early, where he was delighted to find The Count of Monte Cristo, with Richard Chamberlain, running, featuring the Civitivecchia and places he had just seen.