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Irini Konstantinidi is a Greek jazz vocalist and educator exploring the colourful aspects of the voice as an improvising instrument in jazz music. With her lyrical, expressive and clear voice, she has achieved a very personal, classy and refined style in her interpretation of jazz and has been referred to as a jazz voice of pure crystal that's very exciting when she's improvising!

Her crystal, accurate voice and her skillful, creative approach to vocal improvisation are the elements that make her music performance unique. Scat singing is like an extension of her storytelling and imagination. As she, herself, says: "I never feel restricted by difficult chord progressions and forms. Whatever was difficult for my inner ear to perceive quickly, I always thought of as a new challenge and not as something that would make me quit from trying harder."

Irini also enjoys writing lyrics for either original compositions or jazz standards, giving them a fresh interpretation with her elegant sound, adventurous phrasing and thought-provoking words. The most inspiring thing for her is to be totally free and connected to the music whenever she sings. 
Jazz is a game and she loves playing it!

She was born in Athens (Greece) and began her music studies, taking piano lessons at the age of five. She attended Music Highschool of Pallini and in 2001 she graduated from University of Athens with a bachelor in Pedagogy. From a young age, she started singing and recording with several groups and later she participated in theatrical and dance theatre festivals, contributing to the musical scores with her singing and improvising performance.

"The most important decision in my life was that I got into jazz because from that moment on, I strongly felt that I had discovered my true passion and my future profession as a jazz vocalist & educator. A music professor at my university had advised me to study jazz because I had by nature a spontaneous tendency towards improvisation. So I joined the Jazz Department of Athenaeum Conservatory in Athens and graduated with high distinction and the first prize in Jazz vocal performance and improvisation, in 2006."

Irini has performed in the most prestigious jazz venues and the most important jazz festivals in Greece. She has collaborated with the Athens Big Band and almost all musicians of the Greek jazz scene. Her projects and discography had always been receiving excellent reviews and in 2014 her group THE WONDERFALL QUARTET was awarded as the Best Greek Jazz Group and the quartet's second album cd entitled Horizon was awarded as the Best Greek Jazz album of the year. 

As a lead singer, she has formed several groups within her JAZZ BOUND project, arranging and performing jazz or even pop standards, on some of which (mainly compositions of Wayne Shorter and Bill Evans among others) she has written lyrics of her own. She has participated in festivals and has been performing, in venues in Greece and abroad. While interacting with other musicians and different challenging formations (duet with a double bass, trio with guitar and saxophone, etc), she creates diverse musical and sonic environments and a constant interplay with improvisational competence and imagination, upon a jazz standards repertoire, aiming to explore the modern means of musical conversation and the joy of instant creativity, that the art of jazz improvisation is vastly offering. 
Jazz is a language and she loves speaking it! 

Her inquisitive character and growth mindset have led her to take a break from her well-established career as a Jazz vocalist and educator in her hometown and decide to pursue her dreams of travelling, performing and expanding her horizon and academic credentials. So she has currently moved to the Netherlands, where she has already begun undertaking new projects and exciting collaborations (recording with the Metropole Orchestra's Academy and Nomadic Treasures among others) while at the same time she has completed the first year of Master's in Jazz Vocals at the Royal Conservatory - Koninklijk Conservatorium of The Hague. 

Being into music all her life and as she is by nature a joyful, creative and adventurous personality with a strong inclination towards gaining new knowledge, Irini realised that jazz was the field of art that mostly suited her, as the element of improvisation was something coming out almost intuitively from her inner self. When she began teaching jazz back in 2006, she found out that she was able to come up with solutions to the different problems and weaknesses of each student and started building up her own methodology on how to teach jazz singing and improvisation inspiringly and effectively. At fall of 2013, she began her cooperation with the Jazz Department of Musical Praxis Conservatory in Athens, as a jazz vocals teacher. As a jazz educator, she aspires to transfer her passion for improvisation and spontaneous creativity to younger jazz singers.

Her project THE WONDERFALL QUARTET back in 2010 was the vehicle for Irini to get introduced as a distinctive fresh voice and establish her sound in the Greek jazz scene and discography. She was singing original music of a European Jazz style, in which she was writing the lyrics. The group released their debut album entitled The Wonder-fall Quartet, in November 2011 and managed to get the media attention and play their music live on shows of the National Greek Television and Radio (ERT). Τhe second album of the quartet, entitled HORIZON (April 2014) had received excellent reviews and was awarded as the Best Greek Jazz Album of 2014 and the quartet has also been awarded as the Best Greek Jazz Group of 2014, at JazzOnLine.gr portal.

Along with the great reviews and the establishment of the group's presence and contribution in the Greek Jazz scene, came the participation in the 6th Jazz on Tinos Festival on August 29, 2014 (held at the Tinos Cultural Foundation, under the artistic direction of renowned Greek jazz pianist and Academic George Kontrafouris) and also the Quartet's performance in the most important international jazz festival in Greece, the Athens Technopolis Jazz Festival on June 3, 2015, representing Greece at the festival's 15th anniversary.

Irini has also performed at Gazarte, the most prestigious jazz venue in Athens, as a featured vocalist of renowned Greek jazz pianist Dimitris Kalantzis. She has also collaborated with the Athens Big Band at the concert "The Voice of Jazz" that took place at the theatre of Michael Cacoyannis Foundation (Athens, 2/2/2015).

 

 

  • For High-Quality Photos, please click on this dropbox link here, to download Irini's portraits for press-promotional use.
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  • For Press Kit, please click on this dropbox link here, to download Irini's Artist Biography, Contact info and Gallery, all in one PDF file.