Austria’s Young Composers: Eva Reiter

Eva Reiter is without doubt one of the most active and diverse interpreters in the country. Born in 1976 in Vienna, the recorder and viol player is also very active as a composer, focusing especially on the field of contemporary music.

Fast Facts

Born in Vienna. Study of the recorder and viola da gamba at the University of Music and Performing Arts in Vienna. Diploma with distinction. Continuation of both studies at the Sweelinck Conservatorium in Amsterdam. Both Master degrees cum laude. Currently, numerous concerts as a soloist and performances with various baroque orchestras (including De Nederlandse Bachvereenigung), Ensemble Mikado (, Le Badinage, Unidas and ensembles for contemporary music (Ictus, Klangforum Wien, Trio Elastic3, Duo BAND and others). Awarded as a composer with the “publicity prize” of the SKE, promotional prize of the City of Vienna in 2008, the Queen Marie José International Composition Prize 2008 and many other promotions. Selected works for the Rostrum of Composers (IRC) 2009. Eva Reiter’s compositions were performed at international festivals such as Transit/Leuven, Ars Musica in Brussels, ISCM World New Music Festival 2006/Stuttgart, generator and Wien Modern/Vienna Konzerthaus and others. She regularly performs at renowned festivals of classical and contemporary music.


Characteristic for Eva Reiter’s compositional work of recent years is the exploration of the fine line between acoustic and electronic music. The attention is devoted to material that gives the illusion of electronic sounds. The aim is to produce sound with a strong internal structure by simple means. The composer understands sound as the sum of its parameters and develops playing techniques that allow the mixing and layering of each parameter. The sound constructions of the elementary electronic playbacks consist partly of samples taken from the instrument itself, and on the other hand from machinery and engine sounds, with their distinctive asymmetric loop characteristics. They are mainly synthetic sounds of daily urban life – such as engine noises of printing and copying machines, elevators and escalators – that are the center of attention. The formerly cold, raw sound aesthetics of these machinery loops move into the background during the compositional process. Reiter develops alloys between the electronic and instrumental sound, thus creating a symbiotic structure. In the severity of the compositional plan and the exact timing between live part and tape, the interpreter almost gets put into a state of a machine. The ideal contact with the scientific context of molecular biology is evident in almost all of her works. The attention is focused on musical details that have a relationship to each other and are almost microscopically processed and – like experimenting in a laboratory – are exposed to different environmental factors.

Important Works

“Alle Verbindungen gelten nur jetzt” (2008)
Commissioned by ORF and Jeunesse, all connections are driven to an extreme “choreographic” play between instrumental links, resolutions, and collisions.

“Konter” (2009)
Commissioned by Wien Modern, 2009, a fast counter attack. Active defensive technique: An opponent is blocked by a strong surprise blow while simultaneously trying to hit and attack.

“Zug ins Gelobte” (2010)
Four flutes, tape – five power lines, which are extremely entangled with each other. Music as a state. Power is energy. Like charging a generator until you reach an energy level which you can barely calculate.