For more than a year I have wanted to write about Kaija Saariaho, a contemporary Finnish composer. My reverence for living composers made me hesitate initially. But I did it anyway and actually, it was fun. Saariaho was born in 1952 and studied at the Institut de Recherche et de Coordination Acoustique/Musique (IRCAM), a research institute founded by Pierre Boulez to promote musical and acoustical studies. IRCAM was and still is an incubator for many modern compositions.
A few hours before I started to write this post, the death of Pierre Boulez made the headlines. A controversial person, if I trust my Twitter timeline. Was he the chief representative of contemporary classical music? Of French contemporary classical music? A polemic person and a conductor with too much political influence? As a matter of fact, I am not sure that these questions matter. Music matters.