Alonso Malik Pirio, Grammy award-winning artist, grew up listening to and writing music from a wide variety of styles, including jazz, R&B, rock, Afro-Cuban, funk, and hip-hop. Classically trained, he holds a degree from UCLA’s Herb Alpert School of Music, and has since forged a career as a film composer, performer, music director, orchestrator, and educator.
Alonso's film scores have been heard at dozens of festivals across the US, including Pan African Film Festival, Outfest, Arab Film Festival, and Milwaukee Film Festival. He wrote the score to films, such as HFPA Award-winner, Pendulum (2020), Origin (2018)—which premiered at the Egyptian Theater in Hollywood—as well as for several other animated and live-action shorts, such as Big Bark (2020), and Herald of Blue (2020).
A multi-instrumentalist, Alonso has performed in dozens of pit orchestras, most recently conducting and playing keyboard for the 5-time Tony-winning play, A Christmas Carol, with Center Theater Group in Los Angeles. He is a Grammy-winning choral artist, for singing on The Passion of Yeshua, alongside the UCLA Chamber Singers. He has appeared in concert with artists including Alex Newell, J’Nai Bridges, Bradley Whitford, Kenny Burrell, Julius Thomas III, Kate Burton, and Eliseo Roman.
He is an avid hiker and traveler who lives and works in his native Los Angeles.
“I consider Alonso my secret weapon. From full blown big band arrangements to gorgeous tracks for virtual concerts. Alonso has collaborated with me on them all, and brilliantly.”
-Julius Thomas III
“Alonso Pirio is a wonderful composer. I worked with him on my latest short film ‘Pendulum’ and it was such a great experience. He is hardworking, diligent, a great listener and was able to execute my ideas efficiently and then improved upon it. He also always meets time goals and his creativity/work is top tier. I couldn’t be more happy with what we created for the film. I’m excited to work with him again on future projects. “
-Obinna Robert Onyeri
“I have hired Alonso to do a number of transcription projects for me, as well as subbing for me as a pianist/musical director. Every single time, he has provided the most professional, accomplished work. In particular, for the Chicago Humanities Festival, his deft ear and quick copy work allowed us to recreate classic performances by artists like Freddie Mercury, Montserrat Caballé, Kathleen Battle, and James Ingram. Alonso is my go-to, and he should be yours, too!”
“I hired Alonso to compose an original score for an animated short, Big Bark, that I produced while an MFA Animation student at UCLA. Alonso not only produced a fantastic score that truly elevated my short film, but he also proved to be an excellent communicator and creative collaborator. He is a particularly gifted composer who really understands how to develop a score that suits the needs of the story and the director telling it. I particularly appreciated how flexible, dynamic, and reliable Alonso was to work with, and I can't recommend him enough.”
“Beyond his fresh, original, and exciting composing, Alonso is a consummate musician, and my go-to professional for all music related services. In the years I have worked with him, he has transcribed entire musical scores by ear, music directed ensembles for live performances, produced, edited, and sound mixed virtual choir recordings of voices collected from all over the world, created new arrangements, and recorded countless accompaniment tracks that are, frankly, the best piano playing you will find any where. I trust him with any job, in any setting, be it a recording studio, a classroom, or a live performance.”
“Alonso was a monumental help in bringing my short animated film, Herald of Blue, to life. I asked specifically for African instruments like the Kora, Talking drum, Fula flute, and elements of Saber drumming to be incorporated and he delivered! He was able to create a sweet mix between traditionally European and African instruments that I found lacking in other composers I’ve worked with. Alonso is punctual, easy to work with, and has a knowledge of music that makes him a great addition to any film or project. I’d absolutely work with him again!”
- Jacqueline Barnes
“While collaborating with Alonso is certainly fun and inspiring, the unique benefit of working with him is that he makes you a better artist. His knowledge, communication and sincere humanity bring more options to the table than you ever considered on your own, thereby expanding the creative possibilities to realize your vision.”
-Charles Steven Broadbent
“Alonso is an absolute dream to work with, the total package. A one-stop-shop for pretty much any musical need we could throw at him. His piano accompaniment is excellent both emotionally and technically across virtually any genre. He is an eminently capable composer, arranger, and transcriber. He is always supremely easy to work with and oozes professionalism. Oh and he even plays some mean percussion. I look forward to working with him again soon and would recommend you do the same!”
“In terms of mixing, Alonso really helped me with what I knew was a botched recording. I had several recordings with a choir that just weren’t working as they were and Alonso really helped bring them together to make them coherent and musical again!”