Mohamed-Ali Kammoun is a Tunisian composer, arranger, and pianist. A creator and advocate of avant-garde North African music, his works are essentially inspired by the musical tradition of his country. Blending Tunisian music, jazz, symphonic music, and visual arts, 24 perfumes is his new orchestral creation, consisting of heritage pieces arranged for multicultural orchestra, as well as instrumental compositions called preludes. A tour of the show took place in 2018 and 2019 and ended with a sold-out concert on 19 September at the legendary Olympia in Paris. A double album and a documentary film have been produced as a result of the project (release in 2021). He holds a doctorate in music and musicology from Paris IV Sorbonne and is also a lecturer at the Institut Supérieur de Musique de Tunis, where he teaches harmony and ancient oral music.
SOME REFERENCES AND ACHIEVEMENTS
- Show “24 Perfumes” at the Olympia in Paris 2019
- Musician and creator of the “24 Perfumes” project
- Creation residencies and concerts in 24 Tunisian regions in 2016/2017, with the participation of heritage holders, jazzmen, and classical and contemporary musicians (24 Perfumes)
- Carthage International Festival 2011, 2013, 2016, and Closing in 2018, Premiere of the show “24 Perfumes” (Orchestral creation), with the Orchestra of the Tunis Opera
- Closing of the International Journalism Conference (EU) in Tunis in 2018, Salle Opéra, Cité de la Culture, Show 24 Perfumes, with the Tunisian Symphony Orchestra
- Tabarka Jazz Festival 2018 (Mohamed-Ali KAMMOUN Orchestra)
- Opening of the Sousse International Festival in 2017, at the Sidi Dhaher Theater (Mohamed-Ali KAMMOUN Orchestra)
- Hammamet International Festival 2014 and 2016 (Orchestral creations)
- Salle de la Musique et de la Danse de Strasbourg in 2016 (Quintet)
- Concert for the Tunisian Nobel Prize at the International Court of Justice in The Hague in 2016 (Duo)
- Opening of Sfax Arab Capital of Culture in 2016 (Orchestral creation)
- Opening of the Musical Days of Carthage – JMC in 2016 (Orchestral creation)
- Maison des Cultures du Monde in Paris in 2015 (Trio)
- Guest of the Tunisian National Orchestra in 2014 at the Théâtre Municipal de Tunis (Tba wehkeya)
- Jerash International Arts Festival 2014 (Sextet)
- Junger Kunstler Festival Bayreuth, Germany, 61st and 62nd editions, 2011 and 2012 (East meets West)
- Tunis-Amsterdam Bigband 2010 at the Théâtre Municipal de Tunis (Orchestral creation)
- Festival Découvertes Tunisie 21, 2008, El Jem
- Medina Festival, 2008, Dar Lasram, Tunis
- Festival Couleurs Jazz, 2006, Ennejma Ezzahra, Tunis, Instrumental creation (Sextet)
- Parc de Bagnolet, 2006, Paris (Instrumental creation)
- Fondation Maison de la Tunisie 2005, Paris (First instrumental creation)
- 1991/1994 : Traditional training with the master Habib Dargâch and development within the regional musical ensemble of the city of Sfax. Speciality: singing (option: ‘ûd). Recital at the age of 14: participation as a soloist singer in the open air of the Medina Theatre.
- 1995/1996: Western training and first introduction to the Western keyboard with Professor Mohammad al Oud.
- 1996/2000 : Training in Arab and European classical music at the ISM in Tunis. Traditional courses with the masters Mohammad Saada, Abdelhamid Ben Aljiya, Zouheir Bilhani… Specialty: Classical piano with professor Bassem Makni.
- 2000/2002 : Training in jazz piano (Prof. Grégory Ott) and in jazz orchestra at the Conservatoire Pôle Sud in Strasbourg.
- 2002/2003 : Complete training in Music: Piano, Combos, Polyrhythm, Jazz Harmony & Arrangement (Prof. Frank-Paul Sanchez) at the CIM in Paris (one of the biggest jazz schools in Europe).
- 2003-2005 : Advanced training in modern piano (Prof. Cédric Granelle, disciple of Bernard Maury). Trio workshop with Kathy Roberts. Option: Latin American music, at the famous Bill Evans Piano Academy (Bepa, Paris).
- 2005/2006 : Training in Maurice Copola’s Salsa Orchestra, Studio Bleu, Paris
- 2006 Summer : Summer course organized by the Haute Ecole de Jazz de Suisse Romande in Lausanne and the Jazz Club of Turin (piano teacher: Mario Rusca).
- 2009 Summer : Two weeks of training in Piano and Bigband, Belgium, the first one in Libramont (prof. Josef Dumoulin) and the second one in Namure/Jazz au vert (prof. Erik Vermeulen).
- 2012 Summer : Two weeks of High Level International Workshop at Siena Jazz (National Jazz Academy of Italy). Piano teachers: Jason Lindner (NY), John Taylor (Eng.), and Stefano Di Battaglia. Combo teachers: Steve Cardenas and Lionel Loueke.
- 2016 – 2017 : 2 years of workshops in the 24 Tunisian governorates, with holders of the ancient musical memory of Tunisia / project: Caravane des 24 Perfumes
- 1998 : University Diploma of Musical Studies (DUEM) from the University of Tunis – Higher Institute of Music (ISMT), Rank: second.
- 2000 : Master’s degree in Music and Musicology (ISMT). Master’s thesis: Jazz in Tunisia, analysis, and criticism. Obtained a Merit Scholarship, full funding for 5 years of doctoral training in France in Musicology, prize from the Tunisian Ministry of Higher Education.
- 2002 : Diploma of Advanced Studies (DEA) in Arts (specialty: jazz), University of Strasbourg II, with honors. Master’s thesis: Jazz in Tunisia from 1962 to today. A reflection on the interests of crossbreeding. Average grade: 17/20.
- 2003 : Certificate of Professional Competence in Jazz and Contemporary Music, awarded by the National Federation of Jazz Schools in France (FNEIJMA);
- 2006 : Massimo Molinero Prize, Due Laghi Jazz Festival, Italy.
- 2007 : Admission to the Tunisian Assistantship competition and assignment as a full research teacher at the University of Tunis 1, Higher Institute of Music.
- 2009 : Doctorate in 20th Century Music and Musicology. Thesis: Les nouvelles tendances instrumentales improvisées en Tunisie, Enjeux culturels, esthétiques et didactiques du jazz, de la modalité et du métissage, under the supervision of Professor Jean-Marc Chouvel, Université Paris-Sorbonne, Paris IV, Mention: very honourable.
- 2011 : Promotion to the rank of Master-Assistant in Music and Musicology at the University of Tunis 1.
- 2014 – 2015 : Laureate in Music from the Ministry of Culture of Tunisia. Obtained a full-year scholarship for an artistic residency at the Cité Internationale des Arts in Paris.
- 2015 : Awarded 4 Grand Prizes at the Arab-African Competitions “Les Journées Musicales de Carthage”: Best Arrangement Prize, Silver Tanit for Ensemble Concerts, First and Second Prizes as Composer and Accompanying Pianist at the Nây Competition
- 2016 – 2017 : Laureate in Music of the Support Fund for Literary and Artistic Creation, of the Ministry of Cultural Affairs of Tunisia, for the realization in 2016/2017 of a large creation residency in 24 Tunisian regions (24 Perfumes project)
- 2018 : Produced exclusively by the International Festival of Carthage for the Closing of its 51st edition (Premiere of the orchestral creation “24 Perfumes”)
- 2018 – 2019 : Winner of the European Fund Tfanen, managed by the British Council, for the production in 2019 of a Documentary Film, a Double Album, and a Booklet of drawings (as director and arranger of the 24 Perfumes project)
Pianist with the Iraqi lute player Fawzi Aydi, 2004, Montreal / Composer and conductor, co-composer in the album “Blues Beyond the world”, Label Peermusic, 2008, Germany / Co-composer of the film music “Thalathoun”, feature film by Fadhel Jaziri, 2008 / Pianist with the Cuban singer Mayra Caridad Valdes Quartet, Festival Jazz à Carthage, 2010 / Pianist with Tunisian guitarist Fawzi Chekili, St Polten, Austria, 2010 / Pianist with Mamdouh Bahri Quintet, “Pablo project”, Ennejma Ezzahra 2010 / Arranger of the touring work “La Contrebasse voyageuse”, Montpellier Symphony Orchestra 2013 / Arranger and pianist of the music of international Bands such as Jawhar (2010 tour: Palais Kheireddine, Hammamet theatre…), Lobna Noman & 7ess (2012/2013 tour: Complexe Maaroof in Bahrain in October 2012, Théâtre municipal de Tunis in January 2013…), Sana Moussa (Palestine), etc. / Pianist in the show “Eau Secours” by the choreographer Nawel Scandrani (tour 2013/2014) / Composer of the show “D’une vie à l’autre”, by the choreographer Cyrinne Dousse, 2015 / Composer of the piece “Kerkennah, A visual Melody”, by the visual artist Véronique Verstraete, International Festival of Digital Cultures, E-Fest, 2015, Tunis.
International musicological publications. Article: ” Jazz in Tunisia Aesthetic stakes of crossbreeding and globalization “: in Filigrane n°5, (French review of musical aesthetics)
Ed. Delatour-France, April 2007. International Conference and Article: “Cultural and aesthetic stakes of crossbreeding and globalization in contemporary Arab musical art”, in ACTS of the 6th European Congress of Musical Analysis (Freiburg), Delatour-France, Paris, 2009. Article: Instrumental forms of jazz influence in Tunisia. Analytical study of the music of Anouar Brahem, in Musimédiane, audiovisual and multimedia review of musical analysis, SFAM, 2013, as well as various communications and preparation of conferences. Participation in the elaboration of a manifesto at the first Euro-Arab Music Forum in Amman (19-22 April 2011) / Conference on Contemporary Arab Musical Art, IRCAM 2014 / Conference in 2017 at the International Congress of Tunis / Book project on the Harmony of maqâm-s (in progress)