Born in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, and currently based in Toronto, Anthony has been involved in music since a very young age. Starting off on the accordion, on to the alto and tenor saxophones but being driven by the ever-present urge to want to play drums from the very beginning, Anthony built his own drum set and played from ear for years throughout his youth. He attributes a strong influence to having heard classical, cultural and popular music performed by his older sister on the piano and brother on the guitar as a part of his early musical development.
For over three decades Anthony has been active in international performance, recording, production and teaching career paths. He has collaborated with a vast number of distinguished composers and performers from all styles of music primarily focused on original music. For a number of years he led the Anthony Michelli Bass-less Trio (SSR002), which features some of his original compositions. Anthony was also an active contributing member of The Secret Quartet (Basho and Edition records UK) and the Piero Tucci, Quartet CANUK (U.K./CAN).
Anthony’s discography includes recordings in collaboration with several distinguished artists where he can be heard on over one-hundred internationally released recordings in the contemporary jazz, original composition, popular, creative and world music genres spanning from the year 1995 to the present.
His performance accolades include the 2010 Toronto Independent Music Award (TIMA) in the Best Jazz Category and for the Best Live Category. Michelli has been nominated for numerous JUNO Awards over the years as a member of several jazz, world and popular music categories. In 2003 he received the Grand Prix de Jazz General Motors-Festival International de Jazz de Montreal Award (Nancy Walker Quartet) and the 1995 Jazz Report Award for National Post Secondary School Musician of the Year.
As an educator Anthony has been nominated for the 2020 and 21 President’s University Wide Teaching Award (York University. Anthony is the recipient of the 2008 Mohawk College Incredible 40 at 40 for outstanding contributions to community and leadership performance. He received the 2004 Mohawk College Alumni of Distinction Award and has been nominated for the prestigious Ontario Premier's Award 2004.
Committed to learning and sharing from an extensive educational background in music, Anthony currently holds the unofficial “All But Dissertation” status of his PhD Cross-Cultural Cross-Genre Study of Rhythmic Concepts. He completed a Master of Arts in the Ethnomusicology specializing in rhythm from York University.
Anthony has successfully graduated with Performance degrees from the University of Toronto, Mohawk College, the Banff Center for the Arts and the Lake Placid Center for the Arts summer big band study.
For the past two decades Anthony continues to be on faculty at York University in Toronto and Centennial College in Toronto. He dedicated two decades as a professor at Mohawk College in Hamilton. His area of focus includes private lessons in Jazz and World music styles, Small Group Ensembles, Instrument Master-classes and is the designer and course director of Cuban Music, Careers for Musicians, Business of Music, Entrepreneurship & Portfolio Development, Music Technology, Production and Rhythmic Studies courses. Anthony also currently teaches Ensembles and Private Lessons of varied styles in the popular contemporary idioms as well as having designed and taught the course Musical Creativity 1 and 2 dealing with the application of theory and compositional techniques using Logic Pro X recording software at Centennial College. He has previously taught at the Humber College Community School, at National Music Camp and has been a faculty assistant for nine years at the Inter-Provincial Jazz Camp led by Phil Nimmons.
Anthony has an extensive background in giving master class workshops, clinics and ensembles at many universities, colleges, stores and music festivals abroad, including performances across Canada, Japan, Australia, China, Hong Kong, United States, Brazil, Mexico, Colombia, Ecuador, Bahamas, Barbados, Trinidad, Germany, France, the United Kingdom, Serbia and Luxembourg.
Currently, Anthony is endorsed by Gretsch drums, Paiste cymbals, Remo drumheads and Vater drum sticks and brushes, Cympad, Prologix Percussion Pads, Canopus accessories, PreSonus Audio Electronics and Earthworks Audio microphones. In previous years he has been involved with Sonor drum company for seventeen years, Yamaha, Roland and Peavey in product clinics.
In 2017, his players design stick “Anthony Michelli AM595” signature series drum stick was released by Vater Percussion out of Boston MA, celebrating over 16 years as an endorsee. The stick remains catalogued and distributed worldwide and is a mainstay feature product in their line of their “International Players’ Design Series”.
Some of the selected artists that Anthony has performed at various international club and concert venues in large and small ensembles with include;
Kenny Wheeler; Norma Winston; Anthony Braxton; Reggie Workman;
Maria Schneider; Jim McNeely; Jerry Bergonzi; Hal Galper; Luciana Souza;
Chris Potter; Dave Holland; Dave Douglas; Ron Westray;
Ray Anderson; Dee Daniels; Tom Wilson (Beautiful Scars – Symphonic Literary Recital); Windsor Symphony Orchestra; Thunder Bay Symphony Orchestra; The Royal Conservatory Orchestra; James P. Brown (guitarist); Jeri Brown; Artie Roth Quartet; Ranee Lee; Oliver Jones; Stan Sulzmann; Tim Ries; Dick Oates; Darryl Grant; Ingrid Jensen; Sara Jane Cion; Aaron Goldberg; D.D Jackson; Martin Speake; Nikki Iles; Matt Dusk; Rudy Smith; Hilario Duran; Sam Noto; Pat LaBarbera; Ed Bickert; Reg Schwager; Rob Piltch; Lorne Lofsky; Bill McBirnie; Bernie Senensky; Rez Abbasi, Kiran Ahluwalia; Tony Malaby; Joel Frahm; Moe Koffman; Doug Riley; Phil Nimmons; Kirk Macdonald; Mick Hutton; Niel Swainson; Dave Young; Gary Williamson; Bernie Senensky; Don Thompson; Peter Appleyard; Joe Sealy; Mike Murley; Phil Dwyer; Carol Welsman; Hugh Fraser; Nojo; Babak Amini; Faramaz Aslani; …
Anthony has been involved and toured internationally with the following groups;
Artie Roth Quartet; Tom Van Seters Trio; Nikki Iles Trio(BashoRecords); Nikki Iles Quintet(Symbol); Steve Koven Trio; Brian Dickenson Trio; Adrean Farrugia Ricochet Group; Darren Sigesmund Quintet; Nancy Walker Quartet; Dave Young Trio; Rob Clutton Group; Quinsin Nachoff's Magic Numbers-Trio with string quartet; Lina Allemano 4; William Carn Quintet; Heather Bambrick Group; Mike Cado Tentet; Martin Speake (ECM); Ben Castle; Anthony Kerr; Sara Jane Cion (Naxos); Quinsin Nachoff Quartet; Shirley Eichardt; Rez Abbasi; Carn-Allemano Quintet; Andrew Downing's Attention Span (Black Hen); David Occhipinti Trio (Unity-Page); Jake Langley B3 Trio (Radioland/Verve); Duncan Hopkins Quintet (Unity-Page); Son (aka Chilly Gonzales / Warner Brothers); David Szandor Szigeti (aka Taylor Savvy); Giampaolo Scatozza (aka JUNIK); The Canadian Ambassadors Big Band. He has shared the stage with the Pharaoh Sanders Group, Brad Mehldau Trio, the Bare Naked Ladies, Big Sugar, Everclear to mention a few.
Over the past two decades Anthony has been actively involved in sound production for various projects spanning a wide range of musical idioms, formats and applications including: creative music, commercial music, online, compact disc, vinyl, loop libraries, soundtracks and film scores. His involvement in production has included the roles of Producer, Mix Engineer, Edit Engineer, Master Engineer and Educator.
Anthony is grateful to be a member of various creative and diverse musical projects allowing him to perform in many styles while applying his unique approach to the drums. His need to progress and his quest for knowledge is constant, composing his own music and focusing on helping others realize their projects.