Jean-Claude Risset


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Jean-Claude Risset (1938) began composing computer music when he joined Max Mathews at Bell Labs in 1964. In 1970 he opened a center for digital synthesis at Orsay, the first one in Europe.

The album Mutations (1977) contains his classic Mutations (1969) for tape and synthesizer, Dialogues (1975) for chamber ensemble (flute, clarinet, piano and percussion) processed on magnetic tape, Inharmonique (1977), a tape collage for soprano and tape, and excerpts from Trois Movements Newtoniens (1978) for tape.

He also composed Mutations II (1973) for ensemble and electronics, not included here.

One of the most ambitious compositions of the 1970s is Mirages (1978) for 16 musicians and tape.

Sud / Dialogues / Inharmonique / Mutations (1987) basically only adds the tape composition Sud (1985).

Songes/ Passages/ Computer Suite From Little Boy/ Sud (Wergo, 1988) contains Computer Suite from Little Boy (1968), one of his most famous suites of computer music, Passages (1982) for flute and tape, Sud (1985) for tape, and Songes.

The mini-album Invisible (GMEM, 1996) contains a 20-minute suite of for soprano and tape.

Elementa (Ina-Grm, 2001) contains the 13-minute Avel (1997), the 16-minute Lurai (1992), the 16-minute Invisible Irene (1995) for solo tape, and the 22-minute Elementa (1998) in four movements.

His chamber music also includes Profils (1983) for seven instruments and tape, his vocal music also includes Derives (1985) for choir and magnetic tape, and his solo music also includes Voilements (1987) for saxophone and tape.

Duo pour un Pianiste/ Huit Esquisses en Duo (1989) is a duet for a pianist and a computer playing on the same piano at the same time, divided into eight "sketches": Double, Mirrors, Extensions, Fractals, Stretch, Resonances, Up Down, Metronomes.

Escalas (2001) is scored for large orchestra.

Risset died in 2016.

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