Mike Vaccaro is a freelance musician in greater Los Angeles, California. He is active in the fields of motion pictures, television, jingles, live theater, and classical, jazz, and pop concerts. Performing on a multitude of woodwind instruments including the clarinet, flute, saxophone, and oboe families his background and current performance activities are varied.
After studies at Cerritos College and Cal State University Long Beach (where he premiered the Scaramouche for Alto Saxophone and Orchestra by Darius Milhaud) in classical music he served his professional apprenticeship on tours with Stan Kenton, Woody Herman, Paul Horn, and the American Folk Ballet.
A four year stint in Las Vegas had him performing for production shows and celebrities and various hotels. At the same time he was performing with the Las Vegas Chamber Players and the Las Vegas Symphony Orchestra.
Since 1975 Mike has performed as a freelance musician in virtually every performance situation in the Los Angeles area. Most recently he has been performing at the Pantages Theater, South Bay Civic Light Opera, with The Pageant Of The Masters Orchestra, Long Beach Grand Opera, and in a variety of recording studios, venues, and at concerts throughout the area. Recent recording engagements include The Academy Awards, and the motion pictures, Up, Star Trek, Speed Racer, Ratatouille, Hairspray, Land of the Lost, and Mission Impossible lll, The Incredibles, etc. In addition he is the music contractor at The Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts.
Mike has recently released two new CDs, which, along with his other CDs, can be accessed on this site. He continues to record new CDs, so revisit this page from time to time to see Mike's Latest Hits.
For the past twenty-nine years I have been the house music contractor at the Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts. My duties include hiring, managing, and payroll for musicians in conjunction with celebrity accompaniment, musical theater, and concerts. In addition I have contracted for such eminent names as the Westwood Theater, Bellagio Productions, The Ovation Awards, Children's Miracle Telethon, Avalon Attractions, The Jack Morton Company, PGI International, and the motion picture Apartment Zero. I also contracted the 80 piece orchestra for Ray Charles' Grammy Award-Winning, Platinum CD entitled "Genius Loves Company".
Several years ago I contracted and performed the Stravinsky Octet on composer John Scott's CD. It was a companion piece to his brilliant composition, The Wind in the Willows. Since then, I have done several projects with John, both for film and concert music. This composition, Concerto for Two Trumpets, Harp, and Strings, is another example of John's excellent writing, this time for chamber orchestra. I trust you will enjoy these samples of each of the four movements of the piece that I contracted.
Movement 1 Movement 2 Movement 3 Movement 4
Here are contracting samples from the Ray Charles CD: Click on the titles below to listen to excerpts from "Genius Loves Company" "Hey, Girl" with Michael McDonald "It Was a Very Good Year" with Willie Nelson "Sorry Seems To Be The Hardest Word" with Elton John Grammy Award 47th Annual Grammy Awards Category 84 "Over The Rainbow" with Johnny Mathis Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocalist(s)