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Filipe Pires was born in Lisbon but lives in Porto since 1960. He is the author of several vocal, instrumental and electroacoustics pieces in the categories of chamber music, symphonic music, musical theatre and dance. He started his career as a pianist right after the Portuguese Musical Youth awarded him a First Prize in 1950.
Some years later he concluded the Higher Courses in Piano and Composition at Lisbon’s National Conservatory. He was there taught by Artur Santos, Lúcio Mendes and Croner de Vasconcellos.
As a scholarship holder from the Institute of Higher Culture, he studied three years in Germany and Austria and travelled to several European countries as a pianist and composer.
After he returned to Portugal in 1960, he was appointed Composition lecturer at Porto’s Music Conservatory and or tenyears held the position left vacant by composer Cláudio Carneyro. During this time he also lectured at the Braga Regional Conservatory and at the Vila da Feira Music Academy. He wrote as a music critic for Jornal de Notícias.
Meanwhile, sponsored by the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, he followed some of the courses organized in Darmstadt by Boulez and Stockhausen and did a two year internship in Paris dedicated to electroacoustic music, under the supervision of Pierre Schaeffer.
Again in Portugal he accepted teaching and directing duties at Lisbon’s National Conservatory and during the start of the 1970s actively participated in the Experiência Pedagógica project.
Between 1975 and 1979, Filipe Pires lived once more in Paris as a Music Specialist with the UNESCO International Secretariat. As president of this institution he was sent on several official missions to East European countries, to Africa and to Latin America. He has also travelled to Russia and the USA as a representative of several national agencies or with the purpose of presenting his pieces.
With awards at international composition competitions such as Naples, Cologne and Liége, he also won the National Calouste Gulbenkian Award which in 1968 acknowledged the merit of his choral-symphonic piece Portugaliae Genesis. Much of his work is edited in Portugal, Italy and Germany by the National Culture Department and the labels Numérica and Educo. In Portugal Filipe Pires has held several positions, such as President of the Portuguese Musical Youth, member of the UNESCO National Committee, Director of the Paços de Brandão Music Academy, Vice-President of the Portuguese Authors Society, member of the Artistic Council at the Cooperative "Sinfonia" and councillor at the commission responsible for establishing Porto’s Higher School of Music, where he currently lectures in Composition. In 1997 he was appointed Artistic Director of the Porto National Orchestra, a position he held for two years.