Pauline Oliveros, a trailblazing composer, accordionist, performer, author, teacher, theorist and champion of “deep listening” and “sonic awareness,” has died at the age of 84. The news of her death was reported on Instagram by flutist Claire Chase. Oliveros was a key figure in San Francisco’s experimental music scene in the ’60s. A founding member of the San Francisco Tape Music Center, she composed delicate electronic music compositions that moved no faster than the human breath. She was also an advocate for fellow female musicians.
Among her multitude of accomplishments, Oliveros taught at Mills College in Oakland, CA, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and elsewhere, and was a prolific writer about music. In 2012, Oliveros received the John Cage Award from the Foundation for Contemporary Arts and was a patron of Soundart Radio in Dartington, Devon. Her Deep Listening Room was featured in the 2014 Whitney Biennial and some of her music was featured on the French video game NaissanceE.