Celebrating Talents and Abilities of Highly Gifted Children and Adults

In The Spotlight - Ordinary People Doing Extraordinary Things

Adrian Flores DanDan Tran Dennis Coelho Gary Raffanelli Lexi Lanni Joe Sharino Michael J. Vaughn Stefanie Tolan

Gary Raffanelli

A few years back, while on a trip to Reno, Nevada, a group of us Gary Raffanelliwent to Catch A Rising Star Comedy Club at the Silver Legacy Casino. As soon as the very funny MC sat at the Piano, I knew this was one of the most talented musicians I've ever seen! His command over the piano keys is equal to nothing I've ever witnessed.

When Gary is not performing at the Comedy Club, he's Producing and Directing his own show, Adbacadabra. I recently had the pleasure of seeing them in concert. Almost immediately, I forgot that I wasn't really watching ABBA! If you are lucky enough so see this ABBA Tribute Band perform, please do. You will never forget it! If that's not enough, Gary and his wife, Jeanene, own Slam Grand Piano Company.  The concept was to come up with a piano that was Adbacadabralight weight, easily cared for, and would never go out of tune. Sounds impossible? The company is in its thirteenth year and has received piano orders from several renowned entertainment artists.

Living His Dreams

A very intelligent entertainer once said to Gary, “When you’re dreaming about your life and future, shoot for the moon… because even if you miss, you’ll still be up there somewhere with the stars.” That’s how Gary has lived his life from day one. He was born in the San Francisco bay area, the son of a Chevron Oil Company machinist and homemaker wife.

Gary, at the age of 5, wanted to play music. Watching TV variety shows like “The Ed Sullivan Show” inspired him. It took three years of begging his parents before they signed him up for lessons at 8 years old. Within one year he was performing shows for PTA meetings and local events all over his home town with his two brothers. Hearing the applause and getting that kind of attention became an addiction that would turn out to be life-long. Gary, and his Abbacadabra band are currently enjoying increasing fame and popularity by entertaining on cruise ships and national TV shows.