TONY D’ANNA PRINCE OF PIANO
Tony D’Anna was at home surrounded by great love and music from family and a community of friends, when he peacefully journeyed on into “the Great Mystery” on January 25, 2012.
Sweet and friendly, kind and generous, peaceful and easy going, beautiful and graceful, healthy, tan and glowing, warm and humble, Tony “walked the walk.” A gifted composer, virtuoso pianist, sensitive accompanist and master at his art, Tones presented it with his total dependability and dedication as a professional.
Tony was truly wonderful! So Special! It all came packaged with his great laugh and sense of humor, cute smile, quick wit, hilarious one liners and impeccable timing with joke telling. Of course, all done with that twinkle in his eye!
He loved many instruments and playing music, Chopin, Monk, rivers, hot springs, camping with niece and nephews, sports, movies, playing cards, his cats, and time with family.
Tony was a LA Lakers fan for over fifty years. One would often hear him make a comment seconds before the announcers would. Yes, Zen Tony loved Zen Phil! (Tony was cremated in his Lakers’ T-shirt… He would have loved that.)
Tony served in the Army Reserves in the early 60’s and earned a BA in Music at L.A. City College. A resident of Sonoma County for nearly 40 years, Tony was a much loved and sought after pianist and accompanist. At 71 years of age, he was still working in many musical, theater, and dance worlds.
Maybe you knew him as a dance accompanist in his 31 years at Sonoma State University, his 10 years playing for the Santa Rosa Junior College musical theater productions, or the decades at Cinnabar Theater. Young or well aged, perhaps you were a student, teacher, or choreographer in dance classes he played for be it Ballet, Modern, African, Brazilian, or Eurythmy.
Might be, you delighted in hearing him perform with his exceptional jazz trio or another group such as TOKENKI or recently, PLANET B. It could have been when he backed up jazz and other vocalists at clubs or in recordings with his trio as well as other artists.
You may be one of the congregation or choir members who loved him so. Perhaps it was kids camp, or hanging out at the river and playing volleyball where you met him. He possibly tuned your piano. You could be a good neighbor, family member or long time friend.
You say it was a pleasure to have Tony in your lives – for Tones, it was a pleasure to know you! Having enriched the lives of so many, he will be dearly missed yet joyfully honored. With love and admiration Tony is held in the hearts and influence of those who love him.
Tony’s partner of 24 years, Lisa Pretty, will have his memorial and Life Celebration in the springtime. She thanks this beautiful community for its tremendous outpouring of love and support!
By, Lisa Pretty