Evis Sammoutis House composer
The evening concert was preceded by educational concerts in the morning with the group (Ensemble Modern) and Cypriot composer Evis Sammoutis achieving the incredible feat of making a mammoth impression on 400 children. Sammoutis' work written for string sextet was thought provoking, effective and suitably disturbing. The moments of silence were especially effective and intriguing after the frenzy of musical effects.
...Sammoutis exploring microtonal harmonics in a strangely evocative manner. This piece also explored the guitar's percussive capabilities but in a sensitive way rather than for overt display...
On a formal level, Alter Ego I is very well done, with a lot of variety. Sammoutis' use of different colours and timbres indicates that he is a person with vision who explores every opportunity in his use of timbre. Rhythmically, Alter Ego I is also very contrasting. The ability to put together all these elements in this kind of work is difficult to find, and Evis Sammoutis does this in a marvellous way.
...the piece was an enjoyable, virtuosic voyage through swooshings, tappings and sweepings as well as notes, and it made for a compelling addition to the programme...
A substantial audience attended a very enjoyable concert of music by a composer with an individual and highly expressive language whose name is getting about; Evis Sammoutis (currently based in York) is surely destined for greater and greater success. This was my first experience of the SPNM shortlisted, Greek/Cypriot born, Sammoutis' works, and after 60-70 minutes worth of his music played without pause I left wanting to hear more - a telling comment.... The combination of violin and voice produced some exquisite timbres. I have heard this effect in Rzewski's music, among others, but Taftophonia is the most powerful example of its extended use that I have experienced so far. The foot stamp was dramatic, and the whistled B at the end of the piece ghostly. A wide palette of colours and a beautiful piece. The last composition of the concert, Echopraxia for string sextet, had Pedro Mereiles (viola) and Rohan de Saram (cello) join the Kreutzer Quartet. This was certainly an exciting affair, with all the molten energy of Xenakis combined with a careful juxtaposition of effects. ... It was during this performance that I realised that the programme as a whole had shown Sammoutis to be a master of exploiting unison and near-unison pitches - a wonderful feature of his language, with microtonal clusters and their fluctuations bristling with tension. The ending was superb, the texture dissipating down to the sound of bowed wood and then silence...
...But it was Sammoutis who, once again, stole the show, with Taftophonia (2006) for vocalising violinist. ... Sammoutis' music has a depth and aural richness which belies the appearance on the score." "This multi-prizewinning SPNM shortlisted composer is going from strength to strength and is likely to emerge as one of the more significant younger composers working in England - and, too, he is a notable guitarist!
...The result is a piece full of tension, in which many sound and noise elements are used. Wild passages with whistling, squeaking and shrill sounds interchange with tranquil sounds reminding of the wind rustling. It is a work which allows many associations and is full of liveliness and originality.
...The dissonant sound fabrics and percussive noises nevertheless create a mood of roguish humour and intellectual spirit. The strong applause of the not too shocked audience proved that the watching alone of a performance of such experimental music can fascinate even a conventional audience...
Evis Sammoutis generated much sound and fury!
The rigorous, insistent work by Evis Sammoutis, Iri da Iri, inspired by a verse from Dante's Paradiso, was very well received.
The Cypriot Evis Sammoutis stood out, in Iri da Iri, a piece with a violent repetitive obsessive quality: an emphatic character reminiscent of Varèse, assimilated with instinctive immediacy.
...the world premiere of his magical work Dimorphism, inscribed In memoriam Giacinto Scelsi, music which the great master would have been proud to acknowledge...
We congratulate Evis Sammoutis for his two-violin composition "Dimorphism". He really did credit the composer Giacinto Scelsi, to whom this composition was dedicated.
... intimate new chamber music at its best!