Nicolas Tzortzis was born in May 1978 in Athens and has been living in Paris, France since 2002. His music is characterized by great vivacity, a musical and visual polyphony, the organic incorporation of extra-musical elements and the controlled presence of technology. Awarded and played throughout the world, Nicolas Tzortzis has been following an autonomous path for years, constantly experimenting, questioning mainstream ideas and practices, while avoiding belonging to any particular “school”. He finds inspiration in his philosophical and political readings (Castoriadis, Delphy, Kondylis, Rumsfeld), pop culture (television series, rock music, documentaries), but also sports and 1920’s surrealism.
He studied instrumental and electronic composition with Philippe Leroux at the CRD de Blanc Mesnil and at the University of Montreal (PhD, April 2013), musical theatre composition with Georges Aperghis at the Hochschule der Kunste in Bern, Switzerland and Computer Aided Composition at the University of Paris 8 under the direction of Horacio Vaggione and José Manuel Lopez-Lopez. In 2009-2010 he attended the CURSUS 1 of composition and computer music at the IRCAM and was later selected for the CURSUS 2 for the years 2010-2012, where he presented “Incompatible(s) V” for silent piano and live electronics, premiered by Pavlos Antoniadis.
He has taken part in master classes with Karlheinz Stockhausen, Brian Ferneyhough, Beat Furrer and François Paris. In 2010, he was selected for the 6th New Composers Forum of the Ensemble Aleph.
In the summer of 2017 and 2018 he taught at the Il Suono summer composition academy in Città di Castello, Italy, giving lectures and workshops on instrumental and electronic composition to emerging composers from around the world.
His music has been performed in France, Greece, Bulgaria, Slovenia, Italy, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Great Britain, Spain, the Netherlands, the USA, Canada, Mexico, Argentina, Peru, Chile, China, Japan, South Korea and Australia, and has been selected and awarded in more than 30 competitions worldwide (USA, Japan, South Korea, Germany, France, Austria, Greece, Italy, Great Britain, Argentina).
He has worked with ensembles such as MusikFabrik, Das Neue Ensemble, Court-Circuit, Divertimento Ensemble, Proxima Centauri, Linea, Quatuor Béla, Arditti Quartet, Tokyo Simfonietta, Arsenale, ECCE, Earplay, ACME, NOISE, Nouvel Ensemble Modern, EBM, TM+, Binoculaire, Nouvel Ensemble Contemporain, Juventas New Music Ensemble, Kairos Quartet, Mantegna Quartet, EnAccord Strijkkwartet, Aleph, Klang, Cairn, Ergon, Dissonart, Trio IAMA, Texture and Vertixe Sonora and soloists Aleksander Gabrys, Quentin Darricau, Lisa Cella, Krista Martynes, Lorna Windsor, Julian Boutin and Spyros Thomas. Selected by Peter Eötvös, he was composer-in-residence at the Herrenhaus Edenkoben in 2013 and he was resident at the Villa Ruffieux in Sierre, Switzerland, from in 2014. In 2015, he was a Fulbright visiting scholar at the CNMAT in UC Berkeley, working on a new piece for the Ensemble Earplay, and was also a resident at the Akademia Schloss Solitude in Stuttgart.
His recent works include a sound and video installation with German artist Sascha Hahn, a piano concerto for the Thessaloniki State Symphony Orchestra, a piece for voice and ensemble, commissioned by the French Radio and a violin chamber concerto for Alexandra Greffin-Klein with the French Ensemble Court-Circuit. In November 2021, his “Vents Contraires” was premiered at the National Opera of Athens, followed by his first music for a dance performance, “A User’s Manual”, at the Onassis Foundation Young Choreographers Festival. November 2019 saw the release of his first portrait CD, “Les mystères”, with Das Neue Ensemble, on the English Label Toccata Classics, as well as a portrait concert by Ensemble MusikFabrik in Cologne.