Musique Concrète Pioneer Pierre Henry Dies at 89


French composer Pierre Henry, who helped pioneer the musique concrète genre of electronic music and is regarded as one of the fathers of the electroacoustic music movement, died July 5 at the Saint-Joseph Hospital in Paris. Henry was 89.

Henry was born in Paris. He began exploring music at the age of 15 and explored ways to merge noise into music. He studied with Nadia Boulanger, Olivier Messiaen, and Félix Passerone at the Paris Conservatoire and went on to compose music for films in the early 1950s.

According to La Croix, he was considered as the “pope of electronic music,” which flattered and annoyed him at the same time.

“I arrived at the moment of making a noise,” he once saud, ” and succeeded in creating something entirely new, an unheard-of sound extremely complex and extraordinary. At first I wanted to invent something strange.”

“My music has never been really electronic, but electro-acoustic. So this recognition leaves me a little cold. A creator does not seek immediate success. I do not have time to get interested in this music, and I stick to my own formulas. I think this music is increasingly polluted, and I find that it is based on only one sound. A simple sound, always and everywhere; A standardized sound. ”

In a 2007 interview he told Figaro: “I am a classical composer who uses the technical means of this century.”

More as this story develops.

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Yehouda Silverman

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