" The activities of Italian composer Carlo Forlivesi are truly of note "
The World of Yamaha


Carlo Forlivesi conducting the rehearsal for the premiere of Kaya
at the Akiyoshidai International Art Village.
 © 2001 

Carlo Forlivesi is both a distinguished scholar active in the professional community and, as a composer, a refined and distinctive voice in new music. He was born in Faenza (Italy) in 1971. At the age of 15, Forlivesi entered the Conservatory Giovan Battista Martini of Bologna as one of the youngest students ever in the composition course. He later won the Academy and Conservatory Prize there. Following graduation from the Conservatory Giuseppe Verdi of Milan as the Composition Prize winner, and from the National Academy of Santa Cecilia of Rome, he joined IRCAM (Institute de Recherche et Coordination Acoustique/Musique) and subsequently DIEM (Danish Institute of Electroacoustic Music), Tokyo College of Music, and Northwestern University, with fellowships from the governments of Italy, Denmark, Japan, and the United States. His activity has mainly focused on new music in Europe, the United States, and Japan. Forlivesi also cultivates a particular interest in early music, which he studied and performed for several years playing organ and harpsichord.
Currently, he is an active composer devoting large part of his time in helping scholarly research. In the last ten years he has conducted in Tokyo and Kyoto extensive research in the field of traditional Japanese music and dance, including the ethnic music of the Ainu in Hokkaido. His work as a researcher is highly reputed in the respective fields and emphasized by the several research awards, fellowships and supports he has received all over the world from organisations such as the Fulbright Commission (USA), the Japanese Ministry of Culture (Monbukagakusho), the Danish Rectors' Conference, France Culture of Radio France, twice from the Rohm Music Foundation of Kyoto, and four times from the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Several times nominated artist-in-residence and music advisor, Forlivesi's international stance is reflected in his eclectic output, which includes compositions for orchestra, choir, chamber music, dance, electronics, and traditional Japanese instruments as well as choreographies and written works. Forlivesi has collaborated with first-class performers and received numerous awards including the Yamaha Music Foundation Award of Tokyo, the Huub Kerstens Prize of Amsterdam (special award for choral music in the Gaudeamus Music Week 2003), the Hamburger Klangwerktage of Hamburg, and the EU Culture 2000. His music is regularly programmed by festivals and theatres worldwide (Paris, Lyon, Milan, Ravenna, Bologna, Berlin, Dresden, Salzbourg, Helsinki, Poznan, Chicago, Atlanta, Los Angeles, Tokyo, Kyoto, Shanghai, Melbourne, etc.), receiving radio performances and reviews (New York Radio, Radio Canada, TYS Japan, ABC Classic, SBS Australia, YLE Finland, RAI Italy). Notable among the many performances of his Japan-related works are the Carlo Forlivesi portrait concerts in Akiyoshidai (AIAV Artist in Residence 2001), Tokyo and Kyoto (sponsored by the Italian Cultural Institute, 2008), featuring masters of the Japanese traditional music and dance, and the release of a monographic CD (ALM Records, Tokyo, 2008).
Recognized educator Forlivesi has been invited to give lectures and masterclasses widely in Europe, the United States and Japan, including the Northwestern University, the University of Chicago, the Loyola University, the National University of Fine Arts and Music of Tokyo, the Seika University of Kyoto, the Tokyo Opera City, the JML Irino Institute of Tokyo, the
Victorian College of Arts of the University of Melbourne, and twice at the National High Conservatory of Music and Dance of Paris (CNSMDP). Under the Fulbright OLP program, he visited and lectured at the University of Pittsburgh and the Los Angeles College.
At present Forlivesi is a lecturer at the Sapporo University and the chairman of the International Composition Competition and Workshop "Unique Forms of Continuity in Space".
 [update 1/2010]


Carlo Forlivesi (b. 1971, Faenza) studied composition, conducting, analysis, piano, harpsichord and early music. Forlivesi began studying piano at the age of six and entered the National Conservatory "G.B. Martini" of Bologna at the age of fifteen - the youngest student of the composition class - where he became later the winner of the Bologna Academy and Conservatory Prize. He holds degrees from the National Conservatory "G.B. Martini" of Bologna (1994, MA), the National Conservatory "G. Verdi" of Milan (1996, MA), and the "Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia" of Rome (1998, PhD). In 1996 Forlivesi received the Milan Conservatory Artistic Committee Commission as best diploma in composition of his year, and was the recipient of the Centre Acanthes Summer Course Bursary.
Selected for the one-year composition and computer music course at IRCAM (1997-1998), he received a comprehensive education in the field of electronic music. His schooling included composition studies with Alessandro Sobiati, Ivan Vandor and Azio Corghi, courses with Ferneyhough, Grisey, Harvey, Manoury, Murail, Risset, Stroppa and Augusta Thomas, and masterclasses with Berio, Boulez, Dutilleux, Ligeti and Xenakis. Forlivesi also cultivates a particular interest in early music which he studied and
performed for several years in Bologna, Milan, Urbino and Barcelona following courses of Jordi Savall (baroque ensemble), Adriano Cavicchi (early music history) and Guido Morini (harpsichord and organ).

Forlivesi has gained international recognition through his success in being awarded a number of honours, including the Hamburger Klangwerktage Award (2006 Hamburg), the Kyoto Rohm Music Foundation Award (2004 and 2008 Kyoto), the Huub Kerstens Prize (special award for choral music in the Gaudeamus Music Week 2003, Amsterdam), the Yamaha Music Foundation Award (2003 Tokyo),
Europe Culture 2000 (2003), the Residences Virtuelles Competition (2003 Montreal), the DTKV “Saxonia” Prize (2002 Leipzig), the Italian Young Artists Association Award (1999 and 2000 Turin), and several mentions at international contests including the Hultgren Cello Solo Biennial (2005 USA), the Poznan Art Centre Composition Competition (2005 Poznan), the Gaudeamus Music Week (2002, 2003, 2004 Amsterdam), and the Takemitsu Award (2000 Tokyo).

In 2001, Forlivesi was appointed artist-in-residence of the Akiyoshidai International Art Village (Japan) where he produced a large multimedia dance music work; the production was performed at the AIAV Concert Hall and highlighted by the Japanese television. In 2004, he was selected to participate to the Ensemble Aleph’s 3rd International Forum of Young Composers (France).

His music has been performed all around the world in major venues such as the Tokyo Opera City, the Theatre Beurs van Berlage Yakult Hall of Amsterdam, the Gaudeamus Music Week, the Opéra National de Lyon, GRAME, the Finnish National Theatre, the Puccini Hall of Milan, the Lubljana Festival, the Dresden Festspielhaus, GMEM (Marseille), Iwaki Auditorium of Melbourne, and several other venues in Paris, Avignon, Berlin, Leipzig, Hamburg, Salzburg, Montreal, Chicago, Columbus, Atlanta, Kyoto. His electronic music works have been programmed especially by IRCAM, Shanghai Washizokei Expo, Los Angeles Sonic Odyssey, New York VoxNovus, Northwestern University, Art Centre Poznan.

Artists to have staged his music include Noh dancer Atsuko Nagamune at Akiyoshidai Concert Hall, Butoh dancer Aki Suzuki at Time of Music (Viitasaari, Finland) and the Finnish National Theatre, Butoh dancer Bunsho Nishioeda at the Zui-Shin-In Temple in Kyoto, Jiuta-mai dancer Sayuri Unou at the Ravenna Festival, the Emilia-Romagna Festival, Elektronische Nacht (Stuttgart), the Northern Cultural Forum (Sapporo), Marjori Ward Marshall Dance Centre of Chicago, the CCJP of Paris and the André Malraux Hall of Lyon, and the Jiuta-mai master Ufo Furusawa (head of the Furusawa school) at the Italian Cultural Institutes in Tokyo (Agnelli Hall) and Kyoto.

Interpreters of his music include conductors Peter Hirsch, Yoichi Sugiyama, Tito Ceccherini, René Nieuwint, Nacho de Paz, Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra, Holland Symfonia, Ensemble Modern IEMA, Golden Fur, MDI Ensemble, Castiglioni Ensemble,
Ensemble Aleph, Koor Nieuwe Muziek, Ensemble Vocale Laboratorio Ottantasette, and solists such as guitarists Rody van Gemert, Marten Falk, Norio Sato, cellists Benjamin Carat, Craig Hultgren, pianists Donna Coleman, Satoshi Inagaki, Shun Irikawa, Jean-Marie Cottet, Amy Dissanayake, singers Anna-Maria Dur, Bernard Loonen, biwa master Yukio Tanaka, shakuhachi player Yosuke Irie and koto/kantele player Eva Alkula.

Forlivesi’s music has been released by ALM Records (Japan), VoxNovus New York Radio (USA), CIRM-Sacem (France), Polish Radio Theatre (Poland) and ERF (Italy).

Documentation on his compositional activity has been issued, among others, by the CDMC of Paris, IRCAM, the Akiyoshidai International Art Village, the Yamaha Music Foundation, the Sapporo University Press and the University of Michigan East Asia Center Press. An extensive interview to Carlo Forlivesi directed by musicologist Lev Koblyakov is in preparation.

Carlo Forlivesi is also known as an active scholar for his dynamic research activity ranging from traditional and ethnic music to new technologies and comparative cultural studies, which brought him to work in institutions such as the Danish Institute of Electroacoustic Music, the Tokyo College of Music, the Sapporo University, and the Northwestern University of Chicago. He received academic grants and awards from a wide variety of international institutions including the governmental cultural programs of Italy (Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 1999-2000), Denmark (Danish Rectors' Conference, 2000-2001), Japan (Monbukagakusho, Japanese Ministry of Culture, Science and Education, 2002-2004), and the USA (the Fulbright Commission, 2005-2006). In addition to his fertile compositional output Forlivesi is the author of scientific publications, and has lectured widely in Europe, America and Japan, including the National High Conservatory of Music and Dance of Paris (CNSMDP), the Northwestern University, the University of Chicago, the Loyola University, the National University of Fine Arts and Music of Tokyo, the Seika University of Kyoto, the Sapporo University, the Tokyo Opera City and the JML Irino Institute of Tokyo. Under the Fulbright OLP program, he visited and lectured at the University of Pittsburgh and the Los Angeles College.
Since 2001, Forlivesi has conducted extensive researches in the field of traditional Japanese instruments (biwa, koto and shakuhachi) and dance (nihon-buyo and jiuta-mai). In addition, he is one of the very few accredited scholars of the traditional music of the Ainu, and the author of a major finding on this subject that was published by the Journal of Comparative Cultures of the Sapporo University. His papers have been presented in international symposiums such as the Asian Pacific Conference at the Victoria University of Wellington.

Forlivesi is regularly requested as a musical advisor and nominator by several international institutions. He served as chair and judge of the Composition Competition IIC Tokyo 2008 (the panel included Marco Stroppa and Davide Anzaghi) and in the International Composition Competition and Workshop "Unique Forms of Continuity in Space" Melbourne 2009. In 2008 he has been appointed nominator for the Kyoto Prize.

At present Forlivesi is a lecturer at the University of Sapporo.
2010 schedule includes performances and seminars in Europe, Japan and Australia.

Biographies and documentation on Carlo Forlivesi are also available, among others, on the websites of the Italian Society of Contemporary Music (SIMC - ISCM), the Italian Institution for Contemporary Music of Rome (CEMAT), the Contemporary Music Documentation Centre of Paris (CDMC) and the Gaudeamus Foundation of Amsterdam.



Carlo Forlivesi at IRCAM - Studio 5. © 1998




(includes Boethius / Japanese window - Sesshu's Landscape 1495 / Ugetsu / Nuove musiche per biwa / En la soledat i el silenci / Requiem / Audivi vocem / Through the looking-glass)
Yukio Tanaka, Norio Sato, Kumiko Shuto, Yosuke Irie, Ayako Shigenari
ALCD-76. ALM Records. Japan 2008. CD.
Electroacoustic music
in "Music and Play"
Centrum Sztuki Dziecka w Poznaniu. Poland 2009. DVD.

Electroacoustic music
in "60x60"
VN-001. Vox Novus. USA 2007. CD.

Electroacoustic music
in "15 Biennale Sztuki dla Dziecka"
Centrum Sztuki Dziecka w Poznaniu
Teatr Polskiego Radia, Rockers Publishing. Poland 2005. CD.

Ensemble Laboratorio Vocale Ottantasette / Cond. Paola Urbinati
in "Acqua"
Nowhere. Italy 2004. CD-DVD.

Ensemble Aleph
in "3rd International Forum of Young Composers"
CIRM (Centre National de Création Musicale), SACEM. France 2004. CD.
WRITINGS   selection

C. Forlivesi, Changing Perspectives on Musical Syncretism Between the West and Japan
カルロ・フォルリベジ 「東」の音と「西」の音 あわせることは可能か?—西洋と日本の音楽的「習合」のための試論 
in RATIO special issue - 音楽 [ ONGAKU ]  (MUSIC)
Kodansha, Tokyo 2010
Language: Japanese

C. Forlivesi, A FOX STORY – The creative collaboration between Takahashi Yūji and Tomiyama Taeko

in "Imagination Without Borders", edited by L. Hein and R. Jennison
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor 2010
Language: English

C. Forlivesi / Lev Koblyakov, Boethius in the Heart of Biwa
Lev KOBLYAKOV talks to Carlo FORLIVESI, Part 1
in "Giappone. Tutela e conservazione di antiche tradizioni" - 日本  古木伝統の保護と保存 - Japan. The protection and conservation of ancient traditions
Edizioni PLUS, 
Pisa University Press 2010
Language: English, Japanese, Italian

C. Forlivesi, Creative Research on Japanese Traditional Instruments and Dance, 2008 - 2009. Biwa / Koto / Jiutamai
新しい音楽への可能性としての日本伝統舞踊と日本伝統楽器の研究 - 2
Rohm Music Foundation Research Fellowship, Kyoto 2009
Language: English, Japanese

C. Forlivesi, The Traditional Music of the Ainu – New Approaches and Findings
Journal of Comparative Cultures NO. 16
Sapporo University Press 2005
Language: English

C. Forlivesi / Noriyuki Tsuji. Kaya - The Sunset
in "Akiyoshidai International Art Village Residence Support Program Document"
Akiyoshidai International Art Village Residency Program Administration Committee. Yamaguchi 2001
Language: English, Japanese

C. Forlivesi, The fairy's book covered in dew
Oeuvre musicales, Cahier d'exploitation
Editions IRCAM – Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris 1998
Language: English, Japanese

C. Forlivesi, Musica e Utopia
in Terza Pagina, VI / 5
Editrice La Mandragora, Bologna 1996
Language: Italian

C. Forlivesi, Anton Webern. Il cammino verso la nuova musica
in Terza Pagina, V / 5-6
Editrice La Mandragora, Bologna 1995
Language: Italian

C. Forlivesi, Quasi come un niente
Edizioni Veronesi, Bologna 1994
Language: Italian
Makis Solomos, Liaisons sémiotiques. Semiotic liaisons. Interviw with Carlo Forlivesi
in "The Logbook"
Centre de Documentation de la Musique Contemporaine (Cdmc), Paris 2004
Language: English, French


Matteo Veronesi, "Carlo Forlivesi Poeta Musicus"
Liber Liber, October 2008 Italy

∆, "Carlo Forlivesi. New music for traditional instruments"
Hogaku, March 2008 Japan

Setsuo Suwa, “Carlo Forlivesi. Ensou katsudou shien. Yamaha ongaku shien seido ni tsuite. Shien taisyousya ni kiku” [Support for performing activity. Yamaha Music Support Programme. Interview with the winners - Carlo Forlivesi]
Ongaku Gendai, August 2003 Japan

∆, “Carlo Forlivesi. Yamaha ongaku shien seido” [Carlo Forlivesi. Yamaha Music Support Programme]
YMF Yamaha Music Foundation, July 2003 Japan
New York Radio, Radio-Canada, ABC Classic, SBS Australia, Radio YLE (Finnish National Radio), Tradio (Finland), Moscow Radio Ultra (Russia).
RAI 3 (Italian National Television), Tele 1 (TV Italy), TYS (TV Japan).
TEACHING   selection

Current position (since 2009): Sapporo University, Japan. Lecturer.

- December 2005 to June 2006. Northwestern University.
- April 2009. University of Chicago.
- April 2009. Los Angeles Occidental College.
- March 2009. University of Pittsburgh.
- February 2006. Loyola University.
- December 2009. National High Conservatory of Music and Dance of Paris (CNSMDP).
- October 2007. University of Ravenna.
- March 2006. National High Conservatory of Music and Dance of Paris (CNSMDP).
- January 2003. Il Circolo della Musica of Imola.
- Apr 2009 to present. University of Sapporo.
- October 2008. Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music.
- September 2008. Italian Institute of Culture of Tokyo.
- May 2008. Seika University of Kyoto.
- March 2008. JML Irino Institute of Tokyo.
- December 2003. University of Sapporo.
- May 2000. Tokyo Opera City.
- October 2010 (scheduled). University of Adelaide. Elder Conservatorium.
- October 2010 (scheduled). Italian Institute of Culture of Melbourne.
- July 2009. University of Melbourne. Victorian College of Arts.



Unique Forms of Continuity in Space


Carlo Forlivesi, SILENZIOSA LUNA



(Background music: Codex Faenza (XIV century), Benedicamus Domino / Carlo Forlivesi, MIDI piano)