Konstantia Gourzi

Composer Conductor

Long biography

Konstantia Gourzi is a rarity amongst classical musicians often being both the composer and the conductor of a concert. In August 2016 she conducted the premiere of her piece Ny-él, Two Angels in the White Garden at the Lucerne Festival, a festival commission and her debut with the Lucerne Festival Academy. Only a month before that, the Festspiele Lucerne Mecklenburg-Vorpommern dedicated a whole evening to the Athens-born artist showcasing the complexity of her work.

Konstantia receives regular commissions from musicians and is often involved in performances. She enjoys a close working relationship with musicians including Nils Mönkemeyer, Francois Leleux, William Youn, Claudio Bohórguez, the Heath, Minguet and Signum Quartets as well as with the visual artists Alexander Polzin and Jannis Kounellis.

Her artistic aim is to create connections between traditional and contemporary sounds in her compositions and as a creator by putting new emphasis on programming conceptually.

She has composed opera, film music, works for theatre and orchestra as well as numerous solo pieces and chamber music. Her music has been commissioned by Deutsche Staatsoper Berlin, hr-Sinfonieorchester, Bayerischer Rundfunk, Ensemble Musica Nova Israel, State Orchestra Athens, the festival Kasseler Tagen für Neue Musik, Staatsoper München and Patrimonio Nacional Spain. On more than one occasion the Ernst von Siemens Musikstiftung contributed generously to these commissions.

Numerous radio broadcasts, TV programmes and live streams document her concerts. At the end of 2014 ECM released her debut album Music for String Quartet and Piano that received the highest critical acclaim. She also has released recordings with NEOS, NAXOS and SONY Classical.

Always searching for new ways of presenting contemporary music, Konstantia – like her mentor Claudio Abbado – has founded several ensembles and concert series. The Ensemble attacca berlin, created during her student time, led to teaching at Hochschule für Musik Hanns Eisler in Berlin where she started the Ensemble Echo. In 2002 she was appointed Professor at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater Munich where the ensemble oktopus für musik der moderne was founded. In 2007 the Netzwerk und Ensemble opus21musikplus was formed with the aim of opening up contemporary classical music to other forms of art and genres of music with the Pinakothek der Moderne in Munich being a favourite venue to explore these creative avenues.

She also has a particular interest in the advancement of young musicians and today, her alumni are representing the most important ensembles of contemporary music in Europe.

Konstantia Gourzi lives and works in Munich as well as in Aegina, Greece. Since April 2017 she has been Composer in Residence at the International House of Artists Villa Concordia in Bamberg, Germany.

Short biography

Konstantia Gourzi is a rarity amongst classical musicians often being both the composer and the conductor of a concert. In August 2016 she conducted the premiere of her piece Ny-él, Two Angels in the White Garden at the Lucerne Festival, a festival commission.

Her artistic aim is to create connections between traditional and contemporary sounds in her compositions and as a creator by putting new emphasis on programming conceptually.

She has composed opera, film music, works for theatre and orchestra as well as numerous solo pieces and chamber music. Her music has been commissioned by Deutsche Staatsoper Berlin, Lucerne Festival, hr-Sinfonieorchester, Bayerischer Rundfunk, Nils Mönkemeyer, François Leleux, the Heath, Minguet and Signum Quartets to name just a few.
Always searching for new ways of presenting contemporary music, Konstantia – like her mentor Claudio Abbado – has founded several ensembles and concert series. She also has a particular interest in the advancement of young musicians and today, her alumni are representing the most important ensembles of contemporary music in Europe.

At the end of 2014 ECM released her debut Album Music for String Quartet and Piano that received the highest critical acclaim.

Since April 2017 Konstantia Gourzi has been Composer in Residence at the International House of Artists Villa Concordia in Bamberg, Germany. 

Portrait Konstantia Gourzi