Biography


”…the sound of unnatural, echoing beauty.”

Grawemeyer Award

Djuro Zivkovic (original: Ђуро Живковић) is born in Belgrade (Serbia) in December 1975. Since year 2000 he has been living and working in Stockholm, Sweden.
He has been appointed as a permanent member (ledamot) of the esteemed Swedish Royal Academy of Music, and currently teaches composition at the Royal College of Music in Stockholm.

Djuro Zivkovic’s early fascination with folk and Byzantine music has culminated in the development of various innovative compositional techniques. These include polyrhythmic structures, improvisational frameworks, specialized scales, microtonal nuances, layered polyphony, and heterophonic textures. Zivkovic’s unique “Harmonic Field” technique has garnered considerable academic interest, leading to a research study at the University of Music in Graz, Austria. The continued evolution of Djuro Zivkovic’s harmonic field has culminated in the creation of a distinctive compositional technique known as the Ancient Mode.

”…captivating and highly concentrated music that does not for a moment let go of the listener and where the originality clearly permeates the tone language, instrumentation and form.”

Christ Johnson Composition Award

Zivkovic’s music is commissioned, performed, recorded and broadcast by the leading musicians, these include the New York Philharmonic (USA), Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra Amsterdam (Netherlands), Chicago Symphony Orchestra (USA), Klangforum Wien (Austria), Malmö Symphony Orchestra (Sweden), Ensemble Modern (Germany), Sydney Symphony Orchestra (Australia), Swedish Chamber Orchestra (Sweden), Seattle Symphony Orchestra (USA), Asko|Schönberg (Netherlands), Zagreb Philharmonic Orchestra (Croatia), BIT20 (Norway), L’Itinéraire (France), The Netherlands Radio Choir, Avanti! (Finland); as well as Anna Larsson, Christian Karlsen, Emilio Pomarico, Baldur Brönnimann, Brett Dean, Clement Power, Brad Lubman, Shi-Yeon Sung, Martyn Brabbins, Peter Eötvös, Rade Pejcic, etc. Full List Here.

His music holds the Swedish Grammy Award 2010 (Grammis) with Sonanza Ensemble with “Le Cimetière Marin” for mezzo-soprano and ensemble. His “Ascetic Discourse”, a cantata for mezzo-soprano and ensemble, has received the “Mokranjac Award 2012”, the state prize given by Culture Department for the best Serbian composition premièred in 2012. His piece “On the Guarding of the Heart” has won the prestigious “Grawemeyer Award in Music Composition” in 2014, and the Publisher’s Prize for his “Citadel of Love” in 2022.

”His original and highly personal tone and his precise and well-written scores have laid the groundwork for the successes…”

Christ Johnson Composition Award

As a performer Djuro Zivkovic appeared as a violinist and recently as a violist performing the standard repertoire as well as music from the XX Century and pieces written for him. Djuro Zivkovic is particularly interested in the improvisation of music. On his vast violin repertoire, beside a large amount of classical and romantic works, can be found Bartók’s Concerto No2, Prokofiev’s Concerto No2, Shostakovich’s Concerto No1.

”Zivkovic’s sound-cathedral is coloured by mysticism and phantasy”

Camilla Lundberg, Dagens Nyheter