BERLIN, 15 DECEMBER 2007 - The German
avant-garde composer Karlheinz Stockhausen died on 5 December
2007 at his
home in Kuerten-Kettenberg. He was 79. The controversial
composer was buried in the Waldfriedhof (forest cemetery) on 13
December in Kuerten near Cologne.
Stockhausen was born in Moedrath, Germany on 22 August 1928.
Orphaned in WWII, Stockhausen went on to study under composer
Olivier Messiaen in Paris from 1952 to 1953. There he also met
his French contemporary Pierre Boulez.
He composed 362 individually performable works. One of his best
known works, and a good place to start for those unfamiliar
with Stockhausen's music is Gruppen für drei
Orchester (Groups, 1955 -1957). Claudio
Abbado and the 109-member-Berlin Philharmonic's interpretation
from the late 1990s on Deutsche Grammophon is highly
Karlheinz Stockhausen: 1928 - 2007
The works which were composed until 1969 are published by
Universal Edition in Vienna, and all works since then are
published by the Stockhausen-Verlag. Numerous texts by
Stockhausen and about his works have been published by the
Stockhausen Foundation for Music.
Extending his controversial nature into his public life,
Karlheinz Stockhausen found himself embattled in 2001 when he
stated that the 9/11 terrorist attacks on the World Trade
Center in New York were "the greatest work of art that is
possible in the whole cosmos." Although he later apologized for
his comment, the previously confidential German composer of
electronic music was instantly catapulted to planetary fame.
A commemorative concert will take place soon at the
Kuerten, his publisher said, but the programme, time and date
were not announced.