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LUCIANO BERIO

The Italian composer Luciano Berio was born in Oneglia into a musical family. His father and grandfather were organists and composers and he studied music with them both. Although he developed an interest in the piano, the idea of any possible career as a pianist was ended by an injury to his hand sustained during military service in the army, for which he had enrolled in 1944. From 1946 to 1951 he was a student at the Milan Conservatory where he studied counterpoint with Giulio Cesare Paribeni, composition with Giorgio Ghedini, and conducting with Antonino Votto and Carlo Maria Giulini. In addition he worked as an accompanist and subsequently as a conductor in several provincial opera houses. In 1950 he met and married the singer Cathy Berberian, whose vocal virtuosity was to inspire several of his early works.

In 1952 Berio was awarded a Koussevitzky Foundation Scholarship that enabled him to study serialism with Dallapiccola at Tanglewood. While in the USA he also attended the first American concert of electronic music, given in New York by Otto Luening and Vladimir Ussachevsky. Between 1953 and 1960 Berio worked for the Italian Broadcasting Corporation (RAI) in Milan. Here in 1955 he established an electronic music studio with Bruno Maderna, acting as its director until 1959. In addition he and Maderna also founded a journal, Incontri Musicali, and a series of concerts devoted to contemporary music, both of which Berio directed between 1956 and 1959.

During the early 1960s Berio developed a career that saw him living in both Italy and the United States. He taught at Mills College in Oakland, California; Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts; and the Juilliard School in New York City. These posts were combined with periods at the Dartington Summer School in England, and at Darmstadt in Germany. In 1972 he returned to Europe and worked with the French composer and conductor Pierre Boulez in establishing IRCAM (Institut de Recherche et de Coordination Acoustique/Musique) in Paris, where he was head of its electro-acoustic section until 1980.

During this period he also took an active interest in conducting, serving as artistic director of the Israel Chamber Orchestra (1975), the Accademia Filarmonica Romana (1975–1976), the Orchestra Regionale Toscana (1982), and the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino (1984). In 1987 he founded the Tempo Reale, a centre for live electronics in Florence, of which he was artistic director. Here he worked with musicians and computer experts in developing new forms and techniques of musical composition. In 1993–1994, he was Charles Eliot Norton Professor at Harvard University, which was followed by a five-year appointment as Distinguished Composer-in-Residence at Harvard. In 1999 he took over as interim director of the Accademia di Santa Cecilia in Rome, and was elected its President and Artistic Director in 2000. Berio was a pioneer in the use of electronics in composition and applied advances in digital processing to his creative explorations of the human voice, in combination with solo instruments and orchestra.

© Naxos Rights International Ltd. — David Patmore (A–Z of Conductors, Naxos 8.558087–90).

View by Role: Classical Composer | Arranger | Conductor
Role: Classical Composer 
Album Title
Catalogue No  Work Category 
ATTRAZIONE D'AMORE / VOYAGE TO CYTHERA (NTSC) Ideale Audience
DVD9DS12
Classical Documentary
BERIO / XENAKIS / KAGEL / CAGE: Works for Solo Trombone BIS
BIS-CD-388
Instrumental
BERIO / XENAKIS / TURNAGE: Trombone Concertos Dedicated to Christian Lindberg BIS
BIS-SACD-1638
Concertos
BERIO, L.: Sequenzas III and VII / Differences / Chamber Music / 2 pezzi (Berberian, Holliger, Juilliard Ensemble) Newton Classics
NC8802040
Chamber Music, Instrumental, Vocal
BERIO, L.: Sequenzas I-XIV (Shulman, Goodman, Arnold, B. Berman, Trudel, Dann, Sarc, Wood, Valdepenas, Few, Sainz Villegas, Munday, Petric, Adkins) Naxos
8.557661-63
Instrumental, Vocal, Instrumental
BERIO: Duets for 2 violins / DENISOV: Sonata for 2 Violins BIS
BIS-CD-1047
Chamber Music
BERIO: Sequenza XI / SOLBIANI: 3 Pezzi BIS
BIS-CD-823
Instrumental
BEZALY: Solo Flute From A to Z, Vol. 1 BIS
BIS-CD-1159
Instrumental
Biber, H.I.F.: Violin Sonatas Nos. 3, 5, 6 / BERIO, L.: 34 Duets (excerpts) / Sequenza VIII (Arditti, Lyriarte) Oehms Classics
OC611
Instrumental, Chamber Music
Cello Recital: Rosselet, Frederic - BACH, J.S. / BERIO, L. / DUTILLEUX, H. / LIGETI, G. Yarlung Records
YAR07498
Instrumental
Chamber Music - COGGIOLA, P. / BOCCADORO, C. / BERIO, L. / GALANTE, C. / MONTALBETTI, M. / ANTONIONI, F. (Zingiber) (Sentieri Selvaggi) Cantaloupe Music
CA-21067
Vocal
Clarinet Recital: Bosi, Sergio - BERIO, L. / BETTINELLI, B. / BUCCHI, V. / DIONISI, R. / GABUCCI, A. (20th-Century Italian Clarinet Solos) Naxos
8.573090
Instrumental
Clarinet Recital: Brunner, Eduard - WIDMANN, J. / BERIO, L. / JOLIVET, A. / DENISOV, E. / GOEHR, A. / HOSOKAWA, T. / REIMANN, A. Naxos
8.572470
Instrumental
LEAVING HOME: Orchestral Music in the 20th Century (NTSC) Arthaus Musik
102073
Classical Documentary
LEAVING HOME: Orchestral Music in the 20th Century, Vol. 7: Threads (NTSC) Arthaus Musik
102045
Classical Documentary
LINDBERG, Christian: 10-Year Jubilee BIS
BIS-CD-638
Instrumental
LINDBERG, Christian: Virtuoso Trombone (The) BIS
BIS-CD-258
Instrumental
NONO, L.: Polifonica - monodia - ritmica / MADERNA, B.: Serenata No. 2 / BERIO, L.: Differences (Maderna, Berio) (1961) Naxos Classical Archives
9.81020
Chamber Music
ODEONSPLATZ CONCERT 2013 (THE) - Verdi and Wagner (Villazón, Hampson, Nézet-Séguin) (Blu-ray, HD) C Major
716804
Classical Concert
ODEONSPLATZ CONCERT 2013 (THE) - Verdi and Wagner (Villazón, Hampson, Nézet-Séguin) (NTSC) C Major
716708
Classical Concert
PUCCINI / BERIO: Turandot (Salzburg Festival, 2002) (PAL) TDKDVD
DV-OPTURSF
Opera DVD
PUCCINI, G. / BERIO, L.: Turandot (Salzburg Festival, 2002) (NTSC) Arthaus Musik
107094
Opera DVD
REVOLUTION DER KLANGE (DIE): Musik im 20. Jahrhundert (NTSC) Arthaus Musik
102072
Classical Documentary
REVOLUTION DER KLANGE (DIE): Musik im 20. Jahrhundert, Vol. 7: Zu neuen Ufern (NTSC) Arthaus Musik
102044
Classical Documentary
SCHWANTNER, J.: Consortium I / In aeternum / IVES, C.: Largo for Violin, Clarinet and Piano / DAVIDOVSKY, M.: Synchronisms No. 3 (Boston Musica Viva) Delos
DE1011
Vocal
SOLITARY SAXOPHONE (THE) BIS
BIS-CD-640
Instrumental
STOCKHOLM CHAMBER BRASS: Now BIS
BIS-CD-1213
Chamber Music
Violin Recital: Dodds, Daniel - BACH, J.S. / YSAYE, E. / BERIO, L. / ROCHBERG, G. / ERNST, H.W. / BRAM, T. / MESSIAEN, O. (Time Transcending) Oehms Classics
OC832
Instrumental
Vocal Recital: Shirai, Mitsuko - SCHOECK, O. / BERG, A. / HINDEMITH, P. / NUMMI, S. / BRITTEN, B. / WEBERN, A. / RESPIGHI, O. / BERIO, L. Capriccio
C67024
Vocal
XENAKIS: DOX-ORKH / MIRA FORNES: Desde Tan Tien BIS
BIS-CD-772
Concertos

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