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Explorations: Panayiotis Kokoras’ Soundboarding and Crama

August 18, 2009

Tomorrow I’ll be playing the music of Panayiotis Kokoras’ in the Explorations segment tomorrow (8/19 @ 7pm).  We’ll be hearing two pieces: Soundboarding and Crama.

Kokoras is a Greek composer, studying in Athens with teachers such as I.Ioannidi, K. Varotsi, and A. Kergomard.  He earned his MA and PhD in England, studying at the University of York studying with T. Myatt.  He has been commissioned by a number of International institutes and festivals, such as FROMM (Harvard) and IRCAM.  He has earned a number of prizes from international compositions, including Pierre Schaeffer (2005), Look and Listen (2004), and Bourges (2008 and 2004).  Additionally, he is a founding member and the Vice President of the Hellenic Electroacoustic Music Composers Association, and is a lecturer at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki – Department of Music Studies, Greece.  His music has been published by Spectrum Press, NOR, Independent Opposition Records, and others.  Most importantly, he is “concerned  to  see  how  he,  the  listener, maps  the  acoustic  signal  into  a  structural  representation  on  a psycho acoustic  basis  of  the  perception  of  music.  His  compositions  include  significant  influences  of  the electro acoustic  studio  upon  acoustic  instrumental  compositions  and  vice  versa.”  More information can, of course, be found at his website.

The first piece we’ll be hearing, Soundboarding, is a unique work for amplified soprano recorder (doubling with piston flute), classical guitar, and electronics.  It was written for the Dutch musicians Bosgraaf & Elias.  The work is actually a play on the words skateboarding and snowboarding, rather than the acoustical treatments.  The piece attempts to emulate the sounds of those sports and the energy.  The work fuses the electronics and acoustic instruments into a unique blend, creating an unmelodic soundscape.

Crama is similarly unmelodic.  As the composer states, “the  performer  has  the  interest  of making  sounds  not  simply  playing  sounds.”  Written for for amplified flute, clarinet, piano, violin, viola and violoncello , the piece was awarded the First Prize at Gianni Bergamo Classic Music Award 2007 in Lugano.  Kokoras also states that the title refers to a “homogeneous mixture  that  consists  of  two  or more  elements mixed.”  The crunching and pulling apart of the piece create an epic listening experience.

I hope you can tune in tomorrow to listen.  If not, you’ll be able to find the pieces here for a short time after the broadcast.

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