Tristan Murail

Composer
, 1947-
Tristan Murail, born at Le Havre, France, received degrees in classical and North African Arabic (at the National School of Oriental Languages) and in economics (at the Paris Institute of Political Science) before turning to composition. A student of Olivier Messiaen, he won the Prix de Rome in 1971 and spent two years at the Villa Médicis. Upon his return to Paris in 1973, he founded the Itinéraire ensemble with a group of young composers and performers including 1973; the group became widely renowned for its groundbreaking explorations of the relationship between instrumental performance and many aspects of electronics.

In the eighties, Mr. Murail began using computer technology to further his research into acoustic phenomena. This lead him to years of collaboration with IRCAM, where he directed the composition program from 1991 to 1997 and helped develop the Patchwork composition software. Mr. Murail has also taught at numerous schools and festivals worldwide, including the Darmstadt Ferienkurse, the Abbaye de Royaumont, and the Toho University in Tokyo; he currently is a professor of composition at Columbia University. Mr. Murail’s have won many awards and have been widely performed throughout Europe, Asia, Australia, and both Americas. Recent notable works include the orchestral work Le Partage des eaux and the chamber ensemble works Bois flotté, L’Esprit des dunes, and Serendib, which was commissioned by the Ensemble InterContemporain in 1991.

Selected works by Tristan Murail:
“Music is the best means we have of digesting time. ”
--W. H. Auden