Born in a musical family in the Mediterranean island of Cyprus, the violinist Michalis Kouloumis developed a strong musical conception and sensitivity from his early years. He initially studied European music, but soon his personal pursuits led him to the musical traditions of the Orient and especially that of Eastern Mediterranean.
He graduated with “Distinction” from the Department of Greek Traditional music of the PhilipposNakas Conservatory in Athens, being a disciple of YorgosMarinakis. At the same period, he completed his undergraduate studies at the Department of Physics, University of Athens – Greece.
He participated in seminars and master-classes for Ottoman Art music under the artistic direction of Murat Aydemir, KudsiErgüner, ÖmerErdoğdular, BakiKemancı and Ross Daly.
In 2013, he obtained his MA degree in Violin Performance (Ottoman Art music – Taksim) from Codarts, University for the Arts in Rotterdam. Michalis Kouloumis has been awarded the “10/10 Excellence in Performance”, prize given by the “Friends of Codarts Foundation”.
He collaborated and performed with some of the most important representatives of the Mediterranean music scene: Jordi Savvall, KudsiErgüner, SokratisSinopoulos, Gabriel Yared, Nana Mouskouri, Efren Lopez, Ross Daly, Chronis Aidonidis, Manos Achalinotopoulos, Zohar Fresco, Ciğdem Aslan, KyriakosKalaitzides, among others.
Furthermore, performance highlights include: Union Chapel London (UK), Kings Place London (UK), Sommerton Festival (GER), Brighton Fringe Festival (UK), Palace of Arts Budapest (HU), Womad (UK), Houdetsi Music Festival Crete (GR), Mawazine Festival Rabat (MAR), Onassis Cultural Center Athens (GR), SharqTaronalari Music Festival Samarqand (UZ), Bimhuis Amsterdam (NL), Alhambra Concert Hall Paris (FR).
Michalis’ debut album “Soil” which has been released in 2014, comprises of traditional music from Cyprus mingled with his personal approach and aesthetics.
He is a member of “Lingua Franca Ensemble”, an international quartet which they perform their original compositions, influenced by the musical cultures located in the Eastern Mediterranean and beyond. Their debut CD “Ephemera” was released in March 2017.
Displaced Dreams, Michalis Kouloumis’ 2nd personal album is expected to be released n 2018. It includes the homonymous piece “Displaced Dreams”, his most recent work composed for orchestral and traditional instruments.
Michalis Kouloumis is a lecturer at Codarts University for the Arts in Rotterdam, specialized in Violin, Modal Maqam Theory and Improvisation as developed in Ottoman Classical and Greek Traditional music.
He lives and works between Cyprus and the Netherlands.