Dr. Juan Manuel ABRAS, PhD (photo by Sophia Murer)
Dr. Juan Manuel ABRAS, PhD
(born in Stockholm, Sweden)
Juan Manuel Abras (also written Jan Emanuel Abras), born in Stockholm (Sweden), is an international award-winning classical music composer, conductor, musicologist and historian who studied in Vienna, Germany, Italy, etc., has received more than 15 awards (Theodor Körner Prize, TRINAC-ISCM-UNESCO, 2nd Vienna Film Music Prize, etc.) and has lived in 7 countries.
A student of Krzysztof Penderecki and Kurt Schwertsik, Abras also studied with Karlheinz Stockhausen, Helmut Lachenmann, Wolfgang Rihm, etc. Abras holds more than 10 degrees, completed graduate and postgraduate studies (MDW - University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna, Benedetto Marcello Conservatory of Music in Venice, Academy of Music in Krakow, etc.) and is Doctor (PhD) in Music - Composition (UCA), Doctor (PhD) in Musicology (UCM and UVa), etc.
Abras' works have been performed in 20 countries at leading international festivals (Warsaw Autumn, Gaudeamus Music Week, Festival MANCA, etc.) and venues (Salzburg Mozarteum Foundation, Bimhuis-Muziekgebouw aan 't IJ in Amsterdam, Colon Theater in Buenos Aires, etc.) by ensembles, orchestras, etc. (Ensemble Aleph of Paris, Tonkünstler Ensemble of Vienna, Kwartludium Ensemble of Warsaw, etc.), have been commissioned and included in 11 CDs. Abras has been university professor (UNLa and CSMCBA), researcher (UCA), composer-in-residence and member of the Austrian Composers’ Society, SEdeM, Musimagen, FDC, SADAIC, etc.
Cosmopolitan and multifaceted, Abras' music has a "breathless intensity" (Genuin Classics, Germany), is "at the same time visceral and of metaphysical flight" (Alejandro Drago, USA), and can contain "references to literature, religion, archaeology, etc." (Makis Solomos, France), create a "dancing whirlwind somewhat trance-like, full of sunny joy and amusement" (Beata Boleslawska, Poland) and take the listener to a "world of rhythmically pulsating fantasy, similar to a haunted castle" (Wilhelm Kvist, Finland).