Country:   France
10 nodes
The work and aesthetics of Ferrari continue to have a singular impact on several generations of American avant-garde composers. Like Alvin Lucier, Ferrari first obtained a thorough, traditional technique in composition. He took piano lessons with Alfred Cortot, composition lessons with Arthur Honegger and musical analysis with Olivier Messiaen. But he proceeded to become interested in the recording process to such a degree that he began to make tape pieces using altered ambient sounds and later incorporated electronics into his work in an effective and original manner. In 1954, his life altered radically when he boarded a ship and traveled to New York to meet Edgard Varèse, after having been impressed by live radio broadcast of his Déserts for tape and orchestra. From Varèse, Ferrari learned to treat sound as a thing in and of itself; also to place sound objects in the right time and space, from both an audio and psychological point of view. Beyond the mere acceptance of ambient sounds as musical, Ferrari found that his forays with the professional tape recorder into public places added a level of social engagement to his work. This led him to compose pieces in which the audience becomes voyeuristically involved with a kind of audio home movie. In such a state, a great deal is suggested, which is why radio remains such a powerful medium, even in the face of the wide acceptance of television. The disembodied voice of a human being in Ferrari’s work lures in the listener into an intimacy which is palpable. Beyond his work involving technology, Ferrari has composed a large body of instrumental music, ranging from very early piano solos to works for large orchestra, such as Histoire du plaisir et de la désolation (1979-81), a towering 35-minute work in three movements which won the International Koussevitsky Prize for recordings when it was released in 1990. And among his important credits are a series of invaluable television films which he made about the rehearsal processes of Varése, Messiaen, Stockhausen and others. Accessed 15.11.06 from
9 Selected Statements
      Worktype Info Year Country Admin
Société II Composition and if the piano were a womans body... France Edit
Hétérozygote Composition - 1963 France Edit
Interrupteur Composition - 1967 France Edit
Music Promenade Composition - 1969 France Edit
Presque rien No. 1 Le Lever du jour au bord de la mer Composition unspecified 1970 France Edit
Tautologos 3 Composition - 1970 France Edit
Cellule 75 Force du rythme et cadence forcée - - 1975 France Edit
Presque Rien N° 2 Composition ainsi continue la nuit dans ma tête multiple 1977 France Edit
Champ documentaire - Luc Ferrari France Culture Tributes and Documentaries 2005 France Edit