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Konstantia Gourzi

Renowned conductor and composer Konstantia Gourzi partnered with the Greek National Opera and the choreographer Angeliki Stellatou to stage Manos Hadjidakis’ “Gioconda's Smile” at the GNO last March. She then went on to present some of her new and older compositions in Venice and various festivals in Germany, France, Portugal, Finland, Spain, Switzerland and Japan.

Throughout the course of the year, Gourzi worked with leading soloists and various ensembles, and recently began composing a series of works dedicated to seven statues of angels by the German artist Alexander Polzin. The first angel-inspired composition entitled “Paharión” was commissioned by the Spanish Institute of Cultural Heritage. Spain’s Gregorian choir Schola Antiqua, the psalm singer Vasilis Agrokostas, the violinist Miltos Papastamou, the ney player Haris Lambrakis and clarinettist Slava Sernavka were all involved in performing this new work. Last October, when the 1-hour work premiered at the Las Huelgas Monastery of the Virgin in the Spanish city of Burgos, the musicians were conducted by the composer herself.

Her second angel-inspired composition for string quartet entitled “Anájikon” was commissioned by the Kassel Music Days (Musiktage) festival, where the piece was played by the Minguet Quartett. Gourzi also presented Schönberg’s Pieroto played by the ensemble opus21musikplus at the same festival last November, featuring jazz improvisations, as well as Mahler’s 4th Symphony for chamber orchestra.

Konstantia Gourzi is guest conductor at the Lucerne Festival and has been commissioned to compose a piece for orchestra which will be performed in the summer of 2016. It will be her seventh angel-inspired work, entitled “Nyél”. The other angel-inspired compositions are works commissioned for solo viola, a concerto for viola and orchestra, and a concerto for oboe and violin.

Gourzi’s new album featuring Meditation I, a solo for marimba, was recently released in Japan. The composer has also recently accepted a commission from the Archdiocese of Munich and Freising to compose a work to be presented at Munich Cathedral in February 2016 inspired by Jannis Kounellis’ work ‘Crosses’. Gourzi continues unabated in her post as conductor of the oktopus ensemble of students from the University of Music and Performing Arts Munich, presenting a rich series of events, and has attracted extremely favourable reviews in the German press.