Life and work
La Porta studied classical clarinet with Joseph Gigliotti by the Philadelphia Orchestra and later with Leon Russianoff at the Manhattan School of Music. His composition teachers were Ernst Toch and Alexei Haieff. 1937 to 1938, he joined with the American Youth Symphony Orchestra under Leopold Stokowski and Sylvan Levine.
His professional career as a jazz musician, he began in 1942 as a clarinetist in Bob Chester's swing band. From 1944 to 1946 he was a member of the Big Band of Woody Herman. He then worked in New York City with pianist Lennie Tristano. 1953 to 1954 he worked with Charles Mingus and Teo Macero in the central for the training of their own composition concepts Jazz Composers Workshop. In 1954 he recorded his first album as a leader, 1956 was followed by the album Conceptions. He worked as a sideman for Herb Pomeroy, Kenny Clarke, Phil Wilson, Rusty Dedrick, Donald Byrd, Lester Young, Miles Davis, Max Roach, Ray Brown, Fats Navarro, Buddy Rich, Dizzy Gillespie, Charlie Parker, Duke Ellington, Gunther Schuller, Billy Eckstine, Hank Mobley, Bill Evans, Buddy Rich, Bill Harris, Fats Navarro, Oscar Pettiford, Helen Merrill, Neal Hefti, Johnny Mathis and others.
Since the mid- 1950s, LaPorta has focused on teaching, first at the Manhattan School of Music, from 1963 at the Berklee College of Music, and only appeared irregularly. He has written fifteen books on music education and more than two hundred compositions. For Everest recording he took on Igor Stravinsky's Ebony Concerto, and in 1957 he played with the New York Philharmonic under Leonard Bernstein Teo Maceros work a merger.
In 1985 he was again active as a jazz musician, in 1999 he released his latest album Life Cycle. In the 1990s he wrote the autobiography Playing It By Ear. In 2002 he released the album Themes and Variations, which provides the content of the album Conceptions of 1956, as well as additional recordings from the period.
- Jazz clarinetist
- Jazz saxophonist
- High school teacher ( Berklee College of Music)
- American musician
- Born in 1920
- Died in 2004