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Composer Aristos Bouïus

— a personal story —

I only started my musical career at the age of nine, when I received an old harmonium with an almost air-tight bellow from a family friend. In the bench that belonged to the instrument, there were all books with curious stripes - five on top of each other - with black dots, whether or not marked with flags. Notation of course, thanks to the keys that were also drawn.
I started studying - I didn't get any money for taking lessons - and two years later I was the church organist of two Protestant churches.
That meant playing four times a service on Sunday and truancy during the week to accompany church singing during funerals and weddings.
After moving, I was delighted to be invited to become a member of the local harmony: a clarinet (most needed) and a teacher were included in the package for free. Half a year later I was allowed to audition for the conductor and was included in the orchestra.
At the age of sixteen I left the parental home to work elsewhere. I bought an old piano and continued my studies.
Although I later went to study at the University of Leiden, the music continued to tickle. I did courses choir direction in The Hague and took composition lessons from Daan 't Manneke at the Amsterdam conservatory and took violoncello lessons in Rotterdam.
I've always composed ever since. I conducted many choirs both in the Netherlands (including a Gregorian women's choir), in Armenia and in France.
Now that the time has come, but is getting tighter, I can finally devote all my time to composing.

"I can barely conceive of a type of beauty without melancholy."
Charles Baudelaire


Like every composer, I am too inspired and influenced by many composers. Among many others Gesualdo da Venosa, John Dowland, Johannes Brahms, Eric Satie and of course Arvo Pärt are very important.
Perhaps because of the church organs that I already played as a young teenager, the church scales have also stuck in my musical memory. In particular that wonderfully vague (hypo-) locrian mode, which leaves everything in the middle by the lowered fifth.
In addition, Luciano Berio, but even the wind harp - an instrument that makes its own music - both with a very diverse sound scape, influenced my musical education.
Do not expect a noisy spectacle - often called 'note diarrhea' by me - but take the time and especially the rest to listen to the musical spectrum.
Anyway, let yourself be carried away.


My work focuses almost exclusively on "music with text" - in other words, music with a choir and/or solo voice(s).
Furthermore, a lot of work for small, diverse instrumentation, but also orchestral works, such as the (secular) Dies Irae. For this please consult this page on this site, where electronically generated examples can be heard in the absence of real performances for the moment.
Most - but not all - of my music is melancholic / contemplative of nature. At the moment (April 2019) I am working on a cycle of 24 songs for SATB choir with string quintet based on 24 self-selected lieder by Heinrich Heine. The cycle is called Leiden an der Liebe - Suffering from love (see this page). You will find all texts, music and further explanation.


The scores for my music can be purchased via the company Galaxa Media: Galaxa Media.


Of course you can ask me questions at any time via this e-mail address.

Youtube Go to my YouTube channel please and subscribe, for one to be kept informed automatically.

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