Stock­hausen’s style

BBC Music Magazine - - Composer Of The Month -

Mi­cro-macro Stock­hausen set out to cre­ate a uni­fied mu­sic – the tini­est de­tail re­lated to the whole. His search took him from sci­en­tific ra­tio­nal­ism to vi­sion­ary mys­ti­cism, through strict and open forms, all founded on a se­ri­al­ism forged in the cre­ative heat of post­war Ger­many. Space and time In the 1950s, new tech­nol­ogy ex­panded sonic hori­zons, help­ing Stock­hausen to ex­plore mu­si­cal space as well as time. ‘The direc­tions and speeds of the sounds are as im­por­tant as the pitches and the du­ra­tions’, he de­clared.

Poin­tism to su­per for­mula

Stock­hausen con­tin­u­ally shat­tered mu­si­cal bound­aries, com­pos­ing in a daz­zling ar­ray of styles, from the ‘poin­tism’ of Punkte (1952) to the ‘su­per for­mula’ of LICHT (19772002) and be­yond.

Cos­mic com­mu­ni­ca­tion Radio shaped Stock­hausen’s early think­ing as a con­duit for com­mu­ni­ca­tion. Deep-rooted in mu­sic as vi­bra­tion, hence tac­tile and phys­i­cal, he saw him­self as a bridge be­tween hu­man and di­vine. Potty to some, prophetic to oth­ers, LICHT en­cap­su­lated his vast psy­cho-spir­i­tual am­bi­tion.

For­ward think­ing: Stock­hausen in 1971

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