Iannis Xenakis: Rebonds 2

This is day 24 of the A-toZ Challenge in which I attempt to blog every day (excepting Sundays) during the month of April. During this month, I am curating a collection of “classical” music pieces, which are lesser known or by lesser known composers (to me at least).  Today’s composer is Iannis Xenakis (1922 – 2001).

Xenakis was a French-Greek polymath, who studied architecture under Le Corbusier and music under Messiaen.   Actually, how he found Messiaen is interesting.  He tried studying under Nadia Boulanger who rejected him, Arthur Honegger, who did the same, Darius Milhaud, who must have been puzzled with him. Poor dears, they tried to teach him harmony. Frustrated, a friend of Boulanger’s recommended him to Messiaen, who later said this of Xenakis.

“I understood straight away that he was not someone like the others. […] He is of superior intelligence. […] I did something horrible which I should do with no other student, for I think one should study harmony and counterpoint. But this was a man so much out of the ordinary that I said… No, you are almost thirty, you have the good fortune of being Greek, of being an architect and having studied special mathematics. Take advantage of these things. Do them in your music.”

So that is what he did. Back in the 1970s, because he was hip and I think he was teaching at my university at the time, I bought one of his albums, of which I remember absolutely nothing. So, today, it’s like listening to him for the first time, and I find this piece, one of his more accessible.


About kurtnemes
Writer and Education Professional. Specialties include Ethics, Personal Memoir, Classical music, Tai Chi, Stress Reduction, Meditation, Coping, Classical Music, Aging, Love, Joy, Compassion and Equanimity (& what interests me.)

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