Atanas Ourkouzounov Combines Traditional and Contemporary Elements in Fascinating Ways. Joey Lusterman October 1, Strings By Mail Atanas Ourkouzounov | Toccatchenitsa for solo guitar – Composer : Atanas Ourkouzounov Model: DO Instrumentation: Solo Guitar Level. Strings By Mail Atanas Ourkouzounov | Tanzologia for cello and guitar – Level: 4 Number of Pages: 24, plus separated parts Instrumentation: Chamber Music.

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A version of this article originally appeared in the magazine Gitarr och Luta. Ourkouzounov has written over works for guitar-solos, duos, oirkouzounov, quartets, instrumental ensembles, and four concerti-a number of which have won important prizes, and a majority of which have been published by leading publishers Doberman-Yppan, Henry Lemoine.

When Atanas Ourkouzounov plays, things are cooking. I also often tune the third and sixth strings one half-tone down. I have no rules about how the work should go ahead. You seem to have a never-ending source of inspiration at hand!

Wellcome | Atanas Ourkouzounov

Apart from all this composing and performing, Ourkouzounov also teaches constantly, including at the Conservatoire Maurice Ravel in Paris. During my childhood I was fascinated by the folk musicians that used to gather in the square at night in the village where my grandparents lived in ourkouozunov Balkan mountains. The music of Eastern Europe and the Balkans is not rooted in the same fundamentals as Western musical practice, with its principles regarding harmony, harmonic progression, and counterpoint.

What I do know for certain is ourkouzonov I really want and our,ouzounov to write music often. Folk music of Bulgaria is apparently of great importance to you. My own arrangements are mainly from the classical domain, with pieces from such composers as Bartok, Debussy, and Ligeti.


That is the ourkouxounov for this influence still being so strong. Eventually it resembles the process of composing. There are several Bulgarian musicians who create an exciting fusion of traditional music and jazz, and that inspires me a lot. The bases are the rhythms and the different modal scales that we use in this part of the world. The rhythms and the uneven time-signatures?

Ourkouzounov | Atanas Ourkouzounov | Free Listening on SoundCloud

One way of maintaining a cultural identity was to keep the folk music alive. Rhythms tossing and springing to and fro. He offered them food and alcohol, so they went on playing for hours and hours. Atanas Ourkouzounov is one of most interesting personalities in the Bulgarian contemporary music.

Atanas Ourkouzounov – Guitar. When it comes to these types of arrangements, we take the song, dance, or theme and try to create a functioning structure or form, which means that you are more free to put a bit more of yourself into the music.

When it comes to conductors, I often listen to the interpretations of Carlos Kleiber.

Atanas Ourkouzounov

I have had the pleasure of hearing some of your performances together with the flutist Mie Ogura, and the interplay between the two of you is really astonishing. I think it feels natural to play this music on the guitar, and I actually think so in general when it comes to traditional music from different parts of the world.


Other recordings by Atanas Ourkouzounov: Polegnala e Tudora Bulgaria. As a guitarist you have a dazzling technique, making it possible for you to perform highly intricate and difficult passages while still maintaining the expressive content. How do you get your ideas and how do you go about manifesting them? There have been interesting blends of musical influences, such as Orthodox Slavic music, Turkish and Arabian maqamthe musical tradition of the Gypsies, Jewish, Armenian—all of these are being mixed and that is the main reason this music is so rich.

So it will hopefully turn out as an interesting mixture of three different views: It is highly inspiring to work with such people—it motivates me to perform on a higher level, as well. Everything is ourkoouzounov to the music we create. Melodies rapidly winding through flickering semitone-vegetation. He also writes about music, focusing mainly on contemporary music for classical guitar. Mie atabas I have several concerts coming up, and we also have a plan to make a new album of entirely Bulgarian music.

And so is the variety—ranging from your own original compositions to arrangements of popular music. What are the main challenges in transferring this music to the guitar?

He is an excellent and smart musician, with the stamina and drive to put his soul into the work until he has done his very best.