Popular Hudson Valley Musician Set To Appear On HBO Sunday
The HBO series I Know This Much Is True airs its final episode on HBO this Sunday and will feature a performance from a well known Hudson Valley musician.
Vito Petroccitto is known for his time working with a number of Hudson Valley bands, as a prolific songwriter and music teacher. At a December 2018 gig (which happened to be an 80th birthday party for John Lennon's former tutor) at the Vassar Warner Home in Poughkeepsie, a team representing HBO was on site. Among them was I Know This Much Is True director Derek Cianfrance. Cianfrance heard the performance and expressed interest in having Vito perform on the series. The scene Vito would go on to appear in would be reminiscent of this first impression.
The appearance nearly didn't happen due to a scheduling issue but it was resolved at the final hour and filming occurred on Wednesday, July 10th of 2019. Petroccitto showed up on set the day of still unsure of what his role would be on the show. Upon his arrival at 7 AM, he learned that he'd be performing Paul Simon's 'Bridge Over Troubled Water', a song he didn't know at the time.
Vito was given around 15 minutes to learn the song before going in front of the cameras. He came out for a dry run and had a little extra time to learn so he went back into his dressing room to rehearse except he had a visitor this time. Mark Ruffalo had entered the room so it was just the two of them chatting about Taylor guitars for a few moments before Vito had to get back to practice as Ruffalo looked on. The actor admired how quickly Vito had picked up the tune and in fact, Paul Simon himself end up approving the final version performed.
The filming of the performance took place over 17 takes from every possible angle you could think of including one Vito found interesting from the top of the neck of the guitar. As far as what footage makes it to the final episode we'll find out this weekend but overall Vito had a very positive experience with the production. He had this to say about working with director Cianfrance, 'he's brilliant in what he sees and creates yet is so grounded'.
As far as Vito's regular concerts in the Hudson Valley, COVID-19 has drastically effected his gig schedule and you can still support him every Friday night on his YouTube channel as he streams live performances and interacts with the fans. He also offers lessons so if you're looking to refine your chops he's a good guy to talk to.
'I Know This Much Is True' stars actor Mark Ruffalo as the twin Birdsey brothers, the six-episode series is based on the 900-page novel of the same name published by author Wally Lamb in 1998.
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