Filippou & Lucaciu

EVI FILIPPOU   vibes, marimba

ROBERT LUCACIU   bass

Filippou-Lucaciu-4-credits Leon Maria Plecity

 They are angels in the real, always effortlessly elevating the real with magical cathartic power. In many respects and high degree the ideal festival act.

Henning Bolte

On Tour – available dates

January 16 – 26, 2025 | February 20 – March 02, 2025 | May 15 – 25, 2025 | and on request

The dynamic collaboration between the Greek vibraphonist and the German-Romanian double bassist has given rise to an artistic partnership that defies the constraints of rigid genre categorization. Their musical journey of exploration is based on a variety of sources: from the intricate compositions of 20th and 21st century classical music to the spirited rhythms of jazz and evocative stories interwoven in the traditions of folklore. This collaborative sonic exploration transcends the boundaries of predefined labels: the essence of their work lies in the realm of boundless creativity. The interweaving of their unique backgrounds results in an exquisite tapestry of sound in which the vibrancy of the Balkans merges with the cosmopolitan influence of contemporary European musical landscapes. Like a delicate thread of free improvisation, their performances unfold in an unscripted dance that mirrors the flow of life itself. In this tapestry, the notes flow like rivulets of emotion, merging and separating to capture moments of sorrow, joy and the indefinable spaces in between.

The duo’s explorations are characterized by a shared pursuit of personal expression. In a world defined by multiple influences, they create a listening experience that is both timeless and contemporary – a testament to how musical traditions and innovations intermingle at the rhythmic core of the human experience.

(Text: Maria Filippou)

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Evi Filippou (*1993) started playing the drums at the age of 7. She graduated from the Volos Conservatory with a scholarship from the Athens Concert Hall and moved to Berlin in 2011, where she continued her bachelor’s and then master’s studies at the Hochschule für Musik “Ηanns Eisler” (BA and MA degrees with distinction). Evi also took jazz vibraphone lessons. Her professional experience includes participation in orchestras and chamber music ensembles throughout Europe as well as solo performances and duo collaborations (“ff duet” with Katerina Fotinaki, Filippou & Lucaciu with double bassist Rober Lucaciu, BISOUS with Lara Alarcón). Filippou is also active in the jazz scene and has worked with Chris Dahlgren, Arne Braun, Elias Stemeseder, Uli Kempendorff and Angelika Niescier, among others. Evi is also part of the n ï m Dance Company of the Austrian choreographer Naïma Mazic.

Evi performs her own music and arrangements with her project inEvitable. The project’s first record won the German Jazz Award for Debut Album of the Year 2023.

As a curator, Filippou has been promoting diversity in jazz and Berlin’s improvisation scene since 2019 with the concert series Balance for Better (WdK 2019), Das ist nicht eine Frauen concert series (ZigZag Jazzclub, 2021) and, together with Jacobien Vlasman, the Bitches Brew Festival (House of Music 2021, Gretchen 2022). Since 2016 Evi has also been a lecturer in Berlin elementary school sponsored by “Vincentino e.V. – Kultur stärkt Kinder in Berlin”.

Constantly dealing with the coexistence of composition and improvisation, precision and authentic personal expression, Evi lives and practices in Berlin.

Robert Lucaciu is a versatile musician who has established himself as an integral part of the German jazz scene in recent years. His collaboration with vibraphonist and percussionist Evi Filippou and his sextet “Fallen Crooner” are particularly noteworthy. He shares a creative approach to jazz and free improvisation with Filippou. The duo is characterized by a unique musical chemistry. In the sextet “Fallen Crooner”, Lucaciu explores themes such as masculinity and humor together with musicians from Cologne and Berlin. In addition to these projects, Lucaciu is also a sought-after sideman in various European band projects. His musical spectrum ranges from contemporary jazz to classical music and experimental sounds. Lucaciu has received several awards for his work, including the Leipzig Jazz Newcomer Award and the Kathrin Prize. His influence can be heard on over 20 albums, and his concert tours have taken him to over 30 countries around the world.

photo by Peter Hundert

The quality stayed high, but there was one special experience from which could I see every audience member emerging with a smile on her or his face. I was hearing words like “Spielfreude” (joy in playing), “Leichtigkeit” (lightness) being repeated all around me. This was the duo set from Greek-born, Berlin-based vibraphonist Evi Filippou and bassist Robert Lucaciu, born in Saxony and of Romanian origin. The pair have worked together for three years and seem to spark off incredible positive energy in each other. They played Geri Allen’s “Feed the Fire” near the end of the set, and I can’t wait to hear that on the radio. Lucaciu and Filippou both give huge energy, and the vibraphonist has a wonderfully light touch on the instrument (I can’t think of another player who plays quite that weightlessly).

LONDON JAZZ NEWS

The vibraphonist is a fascinating master of her craft. Instead of superficial, high-powered clapping, she modulates the sound, her mallets seeming to literally massage it out of the sound plates. The interaction between the two was just as outstanding as the diversity of the material, which oscillated between atmospheric fragility and post-avant-garde sound production.

JAZZZEITUNG

In their charming, smiling, wild and playful discursiveness they ARE what they PLAY, every single moment: EVI FILIPPOU + ROBERT LUCACIU, vibraphone + double bass, PLAY what they ARE causing freeing effects. They can fly high as well go for small and humble, connected with each other in deep lively rhythm. Crossing through a lot of layers and spheres, they spark trust and desire with their admirable movability. They are angels in the real, always effortlessly elevating the real with magical cathartic power. In many respects and high degree the ideal festival act.

HENNING BOLTE

On the Sunday morning, Berlin based vibraphonist Evi Filippou and bassist Robert Lucaciu began the first of two matinee concerts with a perfectly fitting set of music. They opened slowly, as befits a Sunday morning, with a song penned by Lucaciu that began with gently flowing melody from the vibraphone. This was followed soon thereafter with Filippo ringing tiny bells and applying a bow to the bars of her instrument. creating an eddying pool of ringing over tones. The arc of the set was rather perfectly crafted, from the easing in of the first tune to the energetic free improvisation in the middle, and then at the end a return to form but with a bit more power.

FREEJAZZBLOG