The "Ferruccio Busoni" chamber orchestra, a famous ensemble founded in 1965 by Aldo Belli, was one of the first chamber orchestras to appear in Italy during the post-war period, and is the oldest in the region of Friuli Venezia Giulia. In 2008 it was recognised by the Region as an "institution of regional importance".
The orchestra has caught the attention of public and critics alike by its performances in Austria, Slovenia, Croatia, Germany, Switzerland, Tunisia and Italy, with soloists of exceptional calibre such as Salvatore Accardo, Ivry Gitlis, Domenico Nordio, Gianluca Littera, Michael Flaksman, Lucio Degani, Federico Agostini, Massimo Gon, Friedemann Eichhorn, Peter Bannister, Markus Placci, Priya Mitchell, Mauro Maur, Yvan Chiffoleau, Cristiano Rossi, Sandro De Palma, Dan Zhu, Niek De Groot, Mirel Iancovici, David Cohen, Daniel Rowland.
Ever ready to promote contemporary music, the orchestra has to its credit the premiere performances of a good number of works – some of them dedicated to the Busoni Orchestra – by such contemporary composers as Nieder, Sofianopulo, Margola, Conti, Viozzi, Coral, Dott, Visnoviz, Bellini.
Reviews by the most distinguished Italian critics have appeared in eminent journals:
"… the extraordinary institution which is the Busoni Orchestra conducted, as an undivided entity, by Massimo Belli." AMADEUS – Alberto Cantù
"The conductor Massimo Belli surpasses himself in the second part, given over to the instrumental passages of our operatic glories… But the quality of the orchestra Belli is conducting with such dedication emerges in Verdi's Quartet in E Minor in particular: a rendition of striking formal emphasis within the well-blended quality of the sound." Gianni Gori – MUSICA
The Busoni Orchestra is the creator and principal performer of the Mattinate Musicali at Trieste's Museo Revoltella, providing a rich variety of chamber music which has by now been active for twelve years.
The ensemble has recorded a CD for the record company Velut Luna with Domenico Nordio, and several others under the Rainbow label, two of which include music of Franco Margola, recorded for the very first time.
The orchestra has also recorded for RAI - Italian Radio and Television, for SKY Classic and for Canale 5.
Massimo Belli began studying the violin with his father, then continued with Bruno Polli. Under the tutelage of Renato Zanettovich he graduated cum laude at the "B. Marcello" Conservatory of Venice.
He followed specialization courses in Fiesole with the Trio di Trieste and Piero Farulli, and at the Accademia Chigiana di Siena with Henryk Szeryng. He was a student of Salvatore Accardo's at the Accademia di Alto Perfezionamento "W. Stauffer" in Cremona. He studied conducting with Aldo Belli and Julian Kovatchev.
The winner of numerous national and international competitions, he made his debut at sixteen at the Teatro Politeama Rossetti of Trieste for the Concert Society; later, as a soloist, he performed in the most important venues in Italy, but also throughout Europe, the ex-Soviet Union, Turkey and South America, performing the principal concertos in the violin repertoire, accompanied by such notable orchestras. He was lead violinist in the Italian Youth Orchestra, the Busoni Orchestra, the Haydn Philharmonia, and both lead violinist and conductor of the Virtuosi dell'Ensemble di Venezia.
He has worked with Salvatore Accardo, Ivry Gitlis, Vladimir Mendelssohn, Adriano Vendramelli, Aldo Bennici, Piero Bellugi, Tiziano Severini, Dan Zhu, Michael Flaksman, and Domenico Nordio.
He has broadcast on radio and television in Italy, the Soviet Union, Germany, Yugoslavia, Brazil, and Austria, has recorded for Sipario Dischi, and performed world premieres of works by Donizetti and Tartini for, respectively, Nuova Era (together with the pianist Victoria Terekiev) and Tirreno Editoriale di Lugano.
He teaches violin at the Trieste Conservatory. He has taught at the United World College of the Adriatic and has recently been invited to give masterclasses at the Conservatorio Reale di Murcia (Spain), the Hoochschule of Mannheim and the Academy of Tallin.