With a large number of presentations of his music in Canada, USA, Europe, and elsewhere every year, a continuous stream of commissions by an international list of soloists and ensembles and several recording projects by major and independent labels, Christos Hatzis "is currently enjoying a growing international reputation as one of the most important composers writing today" (CBC Records). He has been hailed as "a contemporary Canadian master (New Yorker) and "one of Canada's brightest lights at the height of his powers" (The Chronicle Herald.) A professor of composition at the Faculty of Music, University of Toronto, Christos Hatzis is the recipient of several national and international distinctions such as the 2008 Jan V. Matejcek Concert Music Award (SOCAN) given each year to the most performed Canadian composer, the Jean A. Chalmers National Music Award, the Prix Italia Special Prize, the Prix Bohemia Radio, the Jules Léger Prize for chamber music and the New Pioneer Award as well as four Juno Award nominations (2003, 2004, 2006 and 2008) in addition to his 2008 and 2006 Juno Awards in the "Classical Composition of the Year" category. Compact disc recordings of his works are available on Deutsche Grammophon (2013), Naxos (2014), EMI Classics, Sony Classical, Analekta, Centrediscs, CBC Records, Marquis, Cherry Red Records and Consipio, quite a few of them consisting exclusively of his music. Quite a few Hatzis recordings have made it to the "Top of" international lists.
Venues presenting Hatzis' music include The Royal Opera House at Convent Garden, St. Paul's Cathedral, The Barbican Center and the Queen Elizabeth Hall in London, UK, The Lincoln Center (Avery Fisher Hall, in a concert shared with Greek troubadour George Dalaras) and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, the Walt Disney Center for the Performing Arts in Los Angeles, the Konzerthaus in Berlin, the Lively Arts Center in Palo Alto, CA, the Megaron halls in Athens and Thessaloniki, Greece, The Beijing Central Conservatory of Music and the Roy Thompson Hall in Toronto and festivals like the High Lights Festival in Montreal, the Luminato Festival in Toronto and the Athens Festival in Greece.
Among his major works are: a full length ballet for native singers, orchestra and electronics a commission by the federal Truth and Reconciliation Commission for the Royal Winnipeg Ballet on the theme of the residential schools (in progress); The Isle is Full of Noises for large orchestra, a commission by l'Orchestre symphonique de Montreal (2013); The Redemption pentalogy (2004 to present) and Lamento for pop singer and orchestra with lyrics by the composer commissioned by CBC for pop diva Sarah Slean and Symphony Nova Scotia (2012). Hatzis chamber works like Old Photographs commissioned by the Gryphon Trio and Coming To, commissioned by renowned violinist Hilary Hahn, have travelled the world extensively and have been released by major record labels. His best known work to date, Constantinople, has been described by the Toronto Star as "a multimedia feast of the imagination...a work unlike any other in the Canadian musical literature...Constantinople defies categories...it is in a class of its own," by the Calgary Herald as "a stunning theatrical triumph" and by the Royal Opera House magazine as "the best music you will ever see."
Hatzis' music is inspired by early Christian spirituality, Pythagorean ideas, his own Byzantine music heritage, world cultures and various non-classical music genres such as jazz, pop and world musics. His compositions are structurally complex while sonically accessible. His strongest inspiration is his own religious faith, and his religious works have been hailed by critics and audiences alike as contemporary masterpieces. Most of Hatzis' writings on music and spirituality and other information about the composer are available at www.hatzis.com.