Artists> Artists in 2012> Panayiotis KOKORAS (Greek)


Panayiotis KOKORAS (Greek)

Panayiotis KOKORAS (Greek)
Panayiotis A. Kokoras (Greece, 1974) completed his musical training in composition and in classical guitar, in Athens. Afterwards, he continued in England where he obtained a Master and a PhD in composition at the University of York. He has taught at the Higher Technological and Educational Institute of Crete and the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. Since August 2012 he is Assistant Professor in Composition at the University of North Texas. He is founding member and vice-president of the Hellenic Electroacoustic Music Composers Association (HELMCA). Panayiotis Kokoras’ sound compositions develop functional classification and matching sound systems written on what he calls Holophonic Musical Texture. His compositional output consists of 50 works ranging from solo, ensemble and orchestral works to mixed media, improvisation and tape. His array of achievements includes commissions from the FROMM (Harvard University), IRCAM (Paris), MATA (New York), IMEB (Bourges), ZKM (Karlsruhe) and 48 distinctions and prizes at international competitions among others Prix Ars Electronica 2011 (Austria), Métamorphoses 2010 & 2000 (Belgium), Giga-Hertz Music Award 2009 (Germany), Bourges 2009, 2008 and 2004 (France), Gianni Bergamo 2007 (Switzerland), Pierre Schaeffer 2005 (Italy), Musica Viva 2005 and 2002 (Portugal), Gaudeamus 2004 and 2003 (Holland), Jurgenson Competition 2003 (Russia), Takemitsu Composition Award 2002 (Japan). Moreover, his works have been selected by juries at more than 120 international call for music opportunities and performed in over 160 cities around the world. His music appears in 30 CD compilations by Miso Records, SAN / CEC, Independent Opposition Records, ICMC2004, LOSS, Host Artists Group, Dissonance Records, Musica Nova, Computer Music Journal (MIT Press) and others.
Magic (2010)
Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic (Arthur Clarke, Profiles of the Future, 1962).
Magic was composed during a residency in the summer 2010 at the ZKM studios in Karlsruhe as part of the Giga-Hertz Production Award. It was a great opportunity for me to work for several weeks without destructions, in good facilities and focused exclusively on the piece. This tight and concentrated schedule gave me about 300 hours composing - divided by the duration of the piece you could get the speed of the composition process, about 3 second per hour -.
Magic is the third and last piece of a project entitled Grand Piano Trilogy. This trilogy is based upon the sound of the piano. The challenge of the trilogy is to expand the sonic possibilities of piano. The sound sources of the work come from around, below and inside the piano played in various unconventional virtuosic ways. Moreover, in this piece several excerpts from the piano repertoire are fused within the piece’s textures, among others Ravel’s Pavane, Beethoven’s Waldstein, Webern’s op27 and John Cage’s 4’ 33. Furthermore, sonic rhetorics link extra musical connotations, with musical processes through associations of ideas.
More than 600 sounds were connected on a note-to-note basis coming out of 7 hours of piano recordings, which I finally reduced to the duration of the piece. The sounds were further processed in order to achieve the virtuosity of the sound the piece required. The initial version of the piece has made for 32 channels and programed through Zirconium software for the Klangdom (sound dome) at ZKM. The title refers to a kind of experience, which is fascinating, charming, excellent, marvelous, exciting to a kind of experience, which is impossible to quantify and rationalize.
This piece was awarded the First Prize at the 4th Destelos International Competition of Electroacoustic Composition and Visual-music, Mar del Plata / Argentina, and a Honorable Mention at the Prix Ars Electronica 2011 – International Competition for CyberArts, Linz / Austria.

Performer vs Electronics: performing music for instrument and electronics

This talk investigates the challenges which face a performer when he/she has to practise a composition for instrument and electronics at home alone and then perform it in a concert hall. Analysis of a survey of performers identified a mixture of high marks on practical aspects but at the same time an incapability of playing a work with electronics. In the second part of the paper, I propose a paradigm for performance material that could provide the necessary information for the performer. It could work as a reference for a composer and as a guide for the performer to know what to expect and how to be prepared.