By Heidi Trautmann
A most thoughtfully compiled music programme for Mezzo
Soprano Katie Economidou; flutist Eran Raman and Fikri Toros on the piano;
music that fully supported the wide range of their musical talent. Katie’s rich
and warm voice is perfectly suited for the geometric patterns of chamber and
church music, this was my impression when I sat among the audience with my eyes
on the beautiful patchwork carpet on the wall of the church, completely
absorbed and carried away.
George Ward, Church Warden for Choir Music, opened the
evening by welcoming the guests and explaining the course of the evening, the
granted 20 minutes of intermission for wine and chats for the 120 guests.
The church hall was fully packed with music lovers and
not only the usual Sunday church goers, but also Greek and Turkish Cypriots
from all over the island and other nationalities…. I recognized Russian, Norwegian
and German friends, and while we were waiting for the concert to start people
exclaimed their joy to see each other like in a sort of family reunion.
The concert was opened by Fikri Toros with Bach whose
music will open the hardest of hearts. In the first part of the concert we had
pieces by composers of the 16th to the 19th century,
Barock music and opera, and after the
interval also composers of the 20th Century, for example McDowall
and Piazzola, known as Tango music composer. I observed the audience going along with the
music, moving to it, obviously touched by the recital of the musicians, and
they became very animated with the Csardas by Monti, wonderfully played by
flutist Eran Raman.
The final piece was the Ave Maria by Bach/Gounod sung
by Katie Economidou which holds very dear memories for me.
An intimate concert, warm and like a precious gem.
Katie Economidou said at the end of the concert that
one of her dream was to once sing in Kyrenia and she was happy to see it
fulfilled. Her other dream is to teach children from across the entire island,
talented kids whose parents cannot afford the expensive music education, which
is a very nice present for the 100th anniversary of the church, the
promise to support the future of talented Cypriot children.
I drove home with a warm feeling in my breast and a
mélange of Barock music in my ears.
Bach: Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring
Albinoni: Adagio in G
Caccini: Tu ch'ai le penne
Franck: Panis Angelicus
Bach: Tocatta in D minor
Mc Dowall: Waltz
Durante: Virgin Tutto Amor
Stradella: Pieta Signore
Bach-Gounod: Ave Maria
Biography Katie Economidou
She studied classical singing at the Ethnicon Odeon of
Cyprus with Lella Symeonidou, and in London with Jane Hill. She continued her
studies with Avra Shati and in 2001 she was awarded the Certificate of Voice
Performance by the Guildhall School of Music and Drama of London (with Merit)
2001, and in 2003 she earned the Diploma in Recital Performance (with Merit)
from the same School. She studied and worked with Sona Gargaloyan and Zara
Barkhoutarian. She gave performances of Italian arias and songs, German Lied,
Sacred and Religious Music, Contemporary and Greek Music. She sang at the first
bicommunal recital in Cyprus in 1995 for the 50th anniversary of the
UN. With her initiative, the Bicommunal Choir was founded in 1996. She
participated in concerts in Cyprus and abroad (London, Germany, Greece). She
recorded for the CyBC and appeared on radio and television.
With a scholarship from the USAID she studied
Political Science and Philosophy at the American University of Beirut from
where she graduated with a BA in 1981.
In 1992-1993 with a Fulbright grant, she studied
Conflict Management and Human Resource Development in the USA. In 1999, with a
scholarship by the British Foreign & Commonwealth Office, she read at the
London Center for International Relations (University of Kent) from where she
graduated with a MA in International Conflict Analysis (with Merit). She taught
Conflict Resolution and Mediation in Cyprus and abroad.
Besides Greek and English, she speaks Italian and
French and has basic knowledge of German and Turkish.
She is a Tourist Guide and has been working for the
Cyprus Tourism Organization since 1982.
She is married and has two daughters
Biography Erman Raman
Born in Gönyeli,
Cyprus, Eran Raman entered Ankara State Conservatory in 1982 and began his
flute studies with Saki Şarıl and Şefika Kutluer, later continuing with Günay
Yetiz. Mr. Raman has performed in many chamber music concerts, as soloist and
first flutist in the Ankara State Conservatory Orchestra and the Başkent
Chamber Orchestra in Ankara. Eran Raman studied with Istvan Barth during his
participation at the 19th International Chamber Music and Orchestra Course in
Pécs, Hungary in 1987. There, his performance was rated as ‘excellent’ by
critics. Upon completing his chamber music studies with French specialist Alain
Boeglin, Eran Raman graduated from the master flute class of Ankara State
Conservatory in 1989 as a student of Zita Zempleni.
Mr. Raman has been a flute, chamber music and theory instructor at the Fine
Arts School in Lefkoşa, North Cyprus and is presently a member of the TRNC
Symphony Orchestra as well as flute instructor of the Music Department at
Eastern Mediterranean University. He is also a regular performer of the TRNC
National Bayrak Television and is working on the composition of computer music.
Eran Raman is a founding member of MUDER (Society of Composers) and has been a
member of the Art and Culture Advisory Council of the TRNC Ministry of
Education and Culture.
In May, 1997, he gave concerts with the Bavaria Youth Symphony Orchestra in
North Cyprus. He performs regularly in North Cyprus and abroad and has given
concerts in France, Estonia, Poland, Hungary, Italy; and also has given
recitals in the United States, Austria, Germany, Belgium, Switzerland,
Macedonia and Turkey.
Biography Fikri Toros
Fikri Toros was born in Nicosia. After having
completed his School and University education in the UK, Toros returned to
North Cyprus in 1984, and became the Director of the Toros Group of Companies.
He began his piano training with Yıldan Birand in 1997, continued and developed
his training with Yılmaz Taner, and Maka
Borchashvili. He is the Chairman and a member of the Kyrenia Chamber Choir.
Since the year 2000, he has accompanied a number of vocalists and violinists at
various chamber concerts. Toros has taken part at the “Helpings Hands” charity
recitals between 2006 and 2010, in aid of the “Help Those With Cancer
Association”, “Pro-Cancer Research Fund” and “Children’s Welfare Association”.
In 2011 he played for “Kyrenia Animal Rescue” together with Demet Alkan James.
Furthermore, Toros is the pianist of the “Cypress Classica” folk ensemble. In
April 2009,he performed at St.John’s Smith Square in London, in aid of the
Pro-Cancer Research Fund. In July and
November 2009, Toros attended masterclass sessions in the UK with the Polish
Pianist Alicja Fiderkiewicz ; and in August 2010 at Chetham’s Music School
where he also performed recitals too.