Fine Arts


Bozidar Kos, distinguished composer, pedagogue and theorist, was born in 1934 in Novo mesto, Slovenia. He studied cello, piano, music theory and mechanical engineering in Slovenia and was active as a jazz player and arranger throughout Europe before moving to Australia in 1965. He studied composition with Richard Meale at the University of Adelaide. In Darmstadt, Germany he attended composition and analysis classes by Gyorgy Ligeti, Brian Ferneyhough, and Mauricio Kagel.

After teaching at the Torrens College of Advanced education (1975) and the University of Adelaide (1976 ~ 1983) he was invited to the Sydney Conservatorium of Music / The University of Sydney, where he became Chair of the Composition and Music Technology Unit. Work at that institution soon placed him among most distinguished Australian composers and pedagogues in the area of Pacific as well as in the world. He retired from the Sydney Conservatorium in 2002 and is now devoting all his time to composition. Since 2008 he resides in Slovenia.

Taking the music of the European avant-garde as a seminal influence, Kos established a style of carefully crafted, harmonically sensitive complexity. Working predominantly in orchestral and chamber music genres, Kos composes music that investigates relationships between musical space, harmony, timbre and texture. He has been writing works based on harmonic and sub-harmonic spectra that incorporate microtones of diverse sizes.

Kos has earned a number of important prizes, grants and awards, among them The Adolf Spivakovsky Scholarship for Composition in 1977, the Albert H. Maggs Composition Award in 1983, third prize at the XXIV Premio Musicale Citta di Trieste competition in 1987 for his Violin Concerto, which also received in 1991 three Sounds Australian National Music Critics' Awards , including 'Best Australian Orchestral Work' and 'Best Musical Work Written by a Composer Resident in New South Wales'. In 2003 he was elected corresponding member of the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts and in 2009 became its full member. In 2004 he received the Classical Music Award for "Long-term Contribution to the Advancement of Australian Music".

Kos has been active in many areas related to composition in Australia and Europe. He introduced his work at the Darmstadt international course for new music. Some of his additional teaching engagements included the Summer School for Young Australian and New Zealand Composers (1983), National Orchestral Composers' School (1992), Visiting Professor at the Music Academy in Ljubljana, Slovenia (1995), and as the mentor for participants of the Australian Composers Orchestral Forum (1999). For many years Kos was also a member of the committee of the International Society for Contemporary Music, Australia Section, and of the executive committee of the Fellowship of Australian Composers.

His music has been commissioned and/or performed and recorded by a variety of renowned soloists, ensembles and orchestras.

Kos has had numerous broadcasts of his music in Australia and in Europe. Recordings of his compositions have been released in Australia on VOX AUSTRALIS, TOLL POPPIES and CURIOUS (NOISE)) labels and in Europe on ZKP RTV Slovenia label.

(Bozidar Kos)


MEDITATIONS for two orchestras with one conductor (1974)
METAMORPHOSIS for orchestra (1978)
SINFONIETTA for string orchestra (1983)
CROSSWINDS for jazz trumpet, alto saxophone and orchestra (1993)
AURORA AUSTRALIS for orchestra (1997)
SYMPHONY No.1 - In memoriam cara Milana (2005/06)
SYMPHONY No.2 - The Symphony of Two Continents (2007/08)

LITTLE FANTASY for chamber ensemble (1978)
QUARTET for flute, viola, percussion and piano (1980)
THREE MOVEMENTS for flute, tbn, percussion and piano (1982)
CATENA 1 for flute, cl, marimba, piano, violin, violoncello (1985)
QUASAR for percussion quartet (1987)
CATENA 2 for flute/piccolo, cl, pno, vln, vla and vc (1989)
LUDUS EX NOMINUM for flute, oboe/cor anglais, trombone, percussion and piano (1989)
CATENA 3 for wind quintet (2003)
FATAMORGANA for flute, clarinet, vibraphone/marimba, violin, violoncello (2004)

REFLECTIONS for piano (1974)
KOLO for piano (1984)
EVOCATIONS for solo cello (1994)
EVOCATIONS II for solo guitar (1999)

MODULATIONS for flute, two percussionists and synthesizer (1974)
SPECTRUM for bass clarinet, marimba and tape (1988)


Contact the composer


Copyright 2010 by Milan Stibilj, Ljubljana. All rights reserved