Demis VISVIKIS - biography
Demis Visvikis was born in 1951 of greek origin. In his early childhood he started learning the piano with his father – himeself a pianist – and went on studyind for several years at the National Conservatory in Athens. Moreover, as he showed a talent for improvisation, he soon discovered other forms of musical expression which he practised in parallel with his school lessons.
In 1970 he settled in Paris where his greed for exploring the diverse musical tendencies urged him to experiment with various types of written, improvised and aleatoric music. Since he didn’t feel attached to any of these movements he tried to perceive what unites them beyong their forms ownig to their essence. Such a deep experience lasted for a few years and made him realise he had a vocation for composing. He then felt an urge to work out the fruit of his discoveries so from 1974 until 1980 he started studying music-writing thoroughly (harmony, counterpoint, fugue, orchestration and composition) under the supervision of M. Julien Falk, composer and teacher at the main National Academy of Music in Paris (Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique de Paris), he also studied conducting with M. Georges Tzipine and perfected his piano playing technique with Mrs Jeannine Lacour, Michelle Boegner et Eliane Richepin.
As soon as 1976, Demis Visvikis made up a rich list of works for piano, chamber and orchestra music. Ever since, his concerts have come to life in prestigious concert halls in Paris and other French towns. Several works have also been scheduled in different countries all over the world. As a pianist he first introduced his own pieces, but since 1990 an increasing number of instrumentalists, among whom first-class pianists, have interpreted his works, thus enabling him to devote himself more particularly to composing. Among his pieces for piano, some have been chosen as works imposed in various international competitions in which he is regularly invited to sit as a jury member.
Demis Visvikis has been the guest of different contemporary music associations and various festivals : the Festival d’Annecy, the Festival Flaine Musique (France), the Festival l’Atelier Volant, the cycle Accès Direct (Switzerland), the cycle Workshop, the cycle Music der Welt (Greece), the cycle Compositori Ellinici (Italy) etc. He has also collaborated with groups such as the French Symphony Orchestra, the OORT Symphony Orchestra, the Ensemble Erwartung, the Ensemble Hellénique de Musique Contemporaine and others. He was several times commissioned by different organisms like the Greek Ministry for the Arts, the French Guild of Soloist-Artists, the Teacher Training Music School of Paris (Ecole Normale de Musique de Paris) which repeatedly imposed his works in exams for higher diplomas (1990-1993-1995-1997-2000).
Since 1989, his works have been parthly published by Éditions Eschig (distributed by BMG), by Éditions Billaudot and by BG Éditions (distributed by Éditions Alphonse Leduc). Since June 2004, Demis Visvikis having created his own catalogue of printed works, has himself provided their distribution. Since 1991, he has been a permanent member of the CMF international piano competition jury and besides from 1996 to1998 he was a member of the Artistic comittee of Universal Arts, working in a huge campaing for bringing the arts and cultures of more than eighty countries in the world closer to one another.
In January 2014, he received the Regional, Departmental and Communal Medal of Honor of the French Republic in recognition of his artistic and pedagogical action within the framework of the local authorities. Demis Visvikis was appointed composer-in-residence at the CRD (Regional National Conservatory) of the Choletais - Pays de la Loire Agglomeration Community (Conservatoire à Rayonnement Départementale) for the 2014/15 season.