December 22, 1883
November 8, 1965 in New York, New York, USA
Also Known As:
Edgard (Edgar) Varèse was a 20th century conductor and composer who experimented with taped music, electronic instruments and technology. He is considered an innovator due to his use of early electronic musical instruments and for utilizing new techniques in sound production.
Type of Compositions:
Edgard Varèse's works include a composition for early forms of electronic instruments; the theremin and ondes martenot. Other compositions include chamber music, electronic music (i.e. "Poème électronique"), choral, orchestral and vocal music.
He studied at the Schola Cantorum under Vincent d’Indy and at the Paris Conservatoire with Charles Widor. Varese was also taught by Albert Roussel. His other influences include Ferruccio Busoni, Claude Debussy and Richard Strauss. Born in France, Varèse immigrated to the United States in 1915 and eventually became a U.S. citizen in 1926.
Some of his notable works are: "Bourgogne" (which he later destroyed), "Hyperprism," "Ionisation" (for percussion, piano, and two sirens), "Density 21.5," "Déserts" (for wind, percussion and tape), "Poème électronique" (written for Philips Pavilion at the Brussels Exposition), "Amériques," "Octandre," "Intégrales," "Arcana," "Ecuatorial" and "Espace."
Varèse founded several organizations to promote his works and the works of other composers. These organizations include the International Composers’ Guild (founded in 1921 with composer Carlos Salzedo), the Pan-American Association of Composers (founded in 1926), the Schola Cantorum of Santa Fe, New Mexico (founded in 1937) and the New Chorus (founded in 1941).
More information on Edgard Varese is available at Brain-juice.com
Listen to Edgard Varese's "Ionisation" courtesy of YouTube.