György Ligeti (1923 - )
Was born in Hungary but later became a naturalized citizen of Austria.
His activities have taken him into almost all European countries as well
as the United States. He has been associated with the Studio for
Electronic Music in Cologne and is one of the leaders of the International
Courses for New Music in Darmstadt. His early works, published in
eastern Europe prior to his departure from Hungary in 1956, are mostly
simple, folk-derived works. His later works are characterized by
an emphasis on color and masses of sound. To achieve this he employs
all varieties of noisemakers, as well as electronically generated sounds.
His compositions, however, have exploited all musical media, from the organ
and string quartet to the symphony orchestra, as well as small and large
vocal ensembles. Among his works are "Volumina," for organ (1961-62);
"Requiem," for solo voices, chorus, and orchestra (1963-65); and
"Lux aeterna," for sixteen solo voices (1966). In several compositions
Ligeti has made critical comments about contemporary compositions.
One such composition is his "Poeme symphonique" (1962) for one hundred
metronomes all operating at different speeds.