Federico graduated from the Conservatorio di Musica “A. Casella” (L’Aquila, Italy) with a BA and an MA in Classical Guitar Performance in 2013 and 2015. In May 2014, he received an Erasmus grant that allowed him to study at Malmö Academy of Music (Sweden) under the guidance of Gunnar Spjuth.
Federico came to York in 2017 and has been living here ever since. He finished the MA in Music Education: Instrumental and Vocal Teaching at the University of York (2018) with distinction and completed a PhD (2023) under the supervision of Dr Liz Haddon at the University of York with a thesis on the Alexander Technique: The Perceptions of Alexander Technique in UK Higher Education Music Institutions: Alexander Technique Teachers, Instrumental/Vocal Teachers, and Music Students (2023).
Federico is currently part of a research team alongside Dr Liz Haddon, Dr Andrea Schiavio, and Marianna Cortesi. Together, they are investigating the social and creative initiatives provided by the Humanity Research Centre at the University of York to support the wellbeing of Arts and Humanities students and staff. The project is internally funded by the Mentally Fit Fund Scheme at the University of York. Federico joins ACT as Associate Lecturer on the MA Music Education course, for which he has worked as Graduate Teaching Assistant since 2019.
Alongside his interest in research, Federico has always been an active performer and guitar teacher. He performed as part of a guitar and soprano duo (with the soprano singer Alessia Paolini) at institutions such as Istituzione Sinfonica Abruzzese, the conservatoires of music in Napoli and Roma, Accademia Romana della Chitarra and the Malmö Academy of Music. In 2009, he was awarded first prize at the 10th Guitar Competition “Città di Voghera” (Italy) in the guitar duo category. In 2012, as a soloist, he won the “Special Prize” at the 4th International Competition “F. Carulli” in Roma (Italy). He has collaborated extensively with the experimental group The Assembled (run by Professor Catherine Laws), the Arc Project, and the pianist Marianna Cortesi. In May 2023, Federico played a tribute to the classical guitar works of Reginald Smith-Brindle for the Late Music Festival in York, also performing a new piece by Chris Gander.
As a guitar teacher, he taught in the preparatory guitar program at the Conservatorio di Musica “A. Casella” in L’Aquila (Italy), 2015-2017. From 2017-2023 he provided one-to-one and small-group guitar lessons and led a guitar ensemble at the York Arts Education Music Centre. He is also a freelance classical guitar instructor at the School of Arts and Creative Technologies.
Pendenza, F. (2023). The Perceptions of Alexander Technique in UK Higher Education Music Institutions: Alexander Technique Teachers, Instrumental/Vocal Teachers, and Music Students (Unpublished doctoral dissertation). School of Arts and Creative Technologies, Music, The University of York.
(2025). Three collaborative chapters: 1) ‘Unseen influences’: The effects of philosophy and biases on approaches to instrumental and vocal teaching; 2) The language of tuition books, and 3) Teachers as creators of educational material for music learners, in Haddon, E. (Ed.) Instrumental Music Education. Bloomsbury.
MA Music Education: Instrumental and Vocal Teaching
‘Wellbeing activities and mental health awareness: Processes, perceptions and potential’, presented at ARTFULNESS conference – Opatija (Croatia), 23rd and 24th September 2023.
‘Wellbeing activities and mental health awareness: Processes, perceptions and potential’, presented in collaboration with Dr Liz Haddon and Marianna Cortesi at the Arts and Humanities Mental Health Research Showcase – University of York, 21st June 2023.
‘The perceptions of the Alexander Technique within UK Higher Education music institutions’, presented at the BFE-RMA Research Students’ Conference 2020 – Open University, 9th January 2020.
‘Playing-related musculoskeletal disorders among guitar players and risk-reducing strategies’, presented at SEMPRE Graduate Conference – University of Cambridge, 25th March 2019.