Marc’s classical bass career began at the Manhattan School of Music, and took an unexpected fortuitous detour to Portugal twenty years ago when he was invited to audition for the Gulbenkian Musica Orchestra in Lisbon. Marc is now the first bass chair and soloist of this much-travelled international symphony. As well as heading up the bass section of the Gulbenkian Orchestra, Marc mentors various educational projects and teaches at the Piaget University Institute and the Higher National Academy of Orchestra.
“My journey has been marked by a series of people who taught me and offered such great opportunities that one of the things that move me is being able to give back what I’ve received. Working with young musicians is one of the most gratifying experiences of my career.”
His beloved Giovanni Cavani double bass has accompanied him for most of his professional career, and it was this exquisite instrument that brought him together with Upton Bass.
The Upton Bass Story
Our “Cavani” bass project began with long discussions after meeting Marc Ramirez at the 2009 ISB convention. Recently Marc commissioned us to make a travel version of his c1870 Giovanni Cavani double bass, built to the original measurements and arching with the addition of our patented removable/adjustable neck system. The fine instruments of Giovanni Cavani (Modena, Italy, 1851-1936) are renowned for their excellent craftsmanship and tone. Marc’s is an outstanding example of an old master “violin makers” bass.
Upton Bass made two of these travel “Cavani” models: one specifically for Marc and another with back and sides of poplar to sell in our showroom. We took the project a step further by building a scaled-up, fixed neck 7/8ths version for the 2015 ISB competition, exploring the Cavani design in a large format. Both of these exciting instruments are currently available: