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Encyclopedia > Edgard Varèse

Edgar (or Edgard) Varèse (December 22, 1883November 6, 1965) was a French-born composer, who moved to the United States in 1915, and took American citizenship in 1926. December 22 is the 356th day of the year (357th in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar. ... 1883 was a common year starting on Monday (see link for calendar). ... November 6 is the 310th day of the year (311th in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar, with 55 days remaining. ... 1965 was a common year starting on Friday (the link is to a full 1965 calendar). ... The French Republic or France (French: République française or France) is a country whose metropolitan territory is located in western Europe, and which is further made up of a collection of overseas islands and territories located in other continents. ... A composer is a person who writes music. ... The United States of America — also referred to as the United States, the U.S.A., the U.S., America, the States, or (archaically) Columbia—is a federal republic of 50 states located primarily in central North America (with the exception of two states: Alaska and Hawaii). ... 1915 was a common year starting on Friday (see link for calendar). ... 1926 was a common year starting on Friday (link will take you to calendar). ...

He spent the first few years in the United States meeting important contributors to American music, promoting his vision of new electronic art music instruments, conducting orchestras, and founding the New Symphony Orchestra. It was also about this time that Varèse began work on his first composition in the United States, Amériques, which was finished in 1921. It was at the completion of this work that Varèse along with Carlos Salzedo founded the International Composers' Guild, dedicated to the performances of new compositions of both American and European composers, for which he composed many of his pieces for orchestral instruments and voices, specifically, during the first half of the 1920s, he composed Offrandes, Hyperprism, Octandre, and Intégrales. Electronic art music is a regrettably vague term for the formal and primarily academic branch of electronic music that is focused on extending musical capabilities through technology. ... Conducting is the act of directing a musical performance by way of visible gestures. ... Orchestra at City Hall (Edmonton). ... Centuries: 19th century - 20th century - 21st century Decades: 1870s 1880s 1890s 1900s 1910s - 1920s - 1930s 1940s 1950s 1960s 1970s Years: 1920 1921 1922 1923 1924 1925 1926 1927 1928 1929 Referred to as the Roaring 20s. ...

In 1928, Varèse returned to Paris to alter one of the parts in Amériques to include the recently constructed Ondes Martenot. Varèse followed Amériques by composing his most famous non-electronic piece about 1930 entitled Ionisation, the first piece to feature solely percussion instruments. Although it was composed with pre-existing instruments, Ionisation was composed as an exploration of new sounds and methods to create them. In 1933, while Varèse was still in Paris, he wrote to the Guggenheim Foundation and Bell Laboratories in an attempt to receive a grant to develop an electronic music studio. His next composition, Ecuatorial, completed in 1934, contained parts for theremins, and Varèse, anticipating the successful receipt of one of his grants, eagerly returned to the United States to finally realize his electronic music. 1928 was a leap year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ... Ondes martenot demonstrated by inventor Maurice Martenot The Ondes Martenot (or Ondes-Martenot or Ondes martenot or Ondium Martenot or Martenot or ondes musicale) is an early electronic musical instrument with a keyboard and slide invented in 1928 by Maurice Martenot, and originally very similar in sound to the Theremin. ... 1930 is a common year starting on Wednesday. ... Percussion instruments are played by being struck, shaken, rubbed or scraped. ... 1933 was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ... Bell Telephone Laboratories or Bell Labs was originally the research and development arm of the United States Bell System, and was the premier corporate facility of its type, developing a range of revolutionary technologies from telephone switches to specialized coverings for telephone cables, to the transistor. ... 1934 was a common year starting on Monday (link will take you to calendar). ... Leon Theremin playing an early Theremin The Theremin or Thereminvox (originally pronounced /tay-ray-meen/ but often anglicized as /there-uh-min/ [1]) is one of the earliest fully electronic musical instruments. ...

Varèse wrote his Ecuatorial for two fingerboard Theremins, bass singer, winds and percussion in the early 1930s. It was premiered on April 15, 1934, under the baton of Nicolas Slonimsky. Then Varèse left New York City, where he had lived since 1915, and moved to Santa Fe, San Francisco and Los Angeles. In 1936 he wrote Density 21.5. By the time Varèse returned in late 1938, Leon Theremin had returned to Russia. This devastated Varèse, who had hoped to work with Theremin on a refinement of his instrument. Varèse had also promoted the theremin in his Western travels, and demonstrated one at a lecture at the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque on November 12, 1936. The University of New Mexico has an RCA theremin, which may be the same instrument. Leon Theremin playing an early Theremin The Theremin or Thereminvox (originally pronounced /tay-ray-meen/ but often anglicized as /there-uh-min/ [1]) is one of the earliest fully electronic musical instruments. ... Bass (IPA: [], rhyming with face), when used as an adjective, describes tones of low frequency. ... A wind instrument consists of a tube containing a column of air which is set into vibration by the player blowing into (or over) a mouthpiece set into the end of the tube. ... Events and trends Technology Jet engine invented Science Nuclear fission discovered by Otto Hahn, Lise Meitner and Fritz Strassmann Pluto, the ninth planet from the Sun, is discovered by Clyde Tombaugh British biologist Arthur Tansley coins term ecosystem War, peace and politics Socialists proclaim The death of Capitalism Rise to... April 15 is the 105th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (106th in leap years). ... 1934 was a common year starting on Monday (link will take you to calendar). ... Nicolas Slonimsky (April 27, 1894 - December 25, 1995) was a Russian-American composer, conductor, music critic, musician, and author. ... Midtown Manhattan, looking north from the Empire State Building, 2005 New York City (officially named the City of New York) is the most populous city in the state of New York and the entire United States. ... 1915 was a common year starting on Friday (see link for calendar). ... Santa Fe (Spanish for holy faith) or Santa Fé (Portuguese) is the name of a number of places in the world: United States of America: Santa Fe, the state capital of New Mexico Santa Fe, Florida Santa Fe, Missouri Santa Fe, Tennessee Santa Fe, Texas Rancho Santa Fe, California It... This article is about the city in California. ... Griffith Observatory and the Downtown Los Angeles skyline. ... Density 21. ... 1938 was a common year starting on Saturday (link will take you to calendar). ... A young Leon Theremin playing his invention Leon Theremin (born Lev Sergeivitch Termen) ( August 15, 1896– November 3, 1993) was the Russian inventor of the Theremin, an electronic musical instrument. ... November 12 is the 316th day of the year (317th in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar, with 49 days remaining. ... 1936 was a leap year starting on Wednesday (link will take you to calendar). ... The University of New Mexico (UNM) is a public university in Albuquerque, New Mexico. ...

When, in the late 1950s, Varèse was approached by a publisher about making Ecuatorial available, there were very few theremins--let alone fingerboard theremins--to be found, so he rewrote/relabelled the part for Ondes Martenot. This new version was premiered in 1961. Millennia: 1st millennium - 2nd millennium - 3rd millennium Events and trends Technology United States tests the first fusion bomb. ... 1961 (As MAD Magazine pointed out on its first cover for the year) was the first upside-down year - i. ...


  • Un grand sommeil noir (1906)
  • Amériques (1918-21)
  • Offrandes (1921)
  • Hyperprism (1922-23)
  • Octandes (1923)
  • Intégrales (1924-25)
  • Arcana (1925-27)
  • Ionisation (1929-31)
  • Ecuatorial (1932-34)
  • Density 21.5 (1936)
  • Tuning Up (1947)
  • Dance for Burgess (1949)
  • Déserts (1950-54)
  • Poème électronique (1957-58)
  • Nocturnal (1961)

External links

Wikiquote has a collection of quotations related to:
  • BBC.co.uk: Music Profiles: Edgard Varèse (http://www.bbc.co.uk/music/profiles/varese.shtml)
  • Edgard Varese - Father of Electronic Music (http://csunix1.lvc.edu/~snyder/em/varese.html)
  • Edgard Varese: The Idol of My Youth (http://csunix1.lvc.edu/~snyder/em/zappa.html) by Frank Zappa
  • Thereminvox.com (http://www.thereminvox.com)
    • Interview (http://www.thereminvox.com/story/496/) with musicologist Olivia Mattis about Edgard Varèse's Ecuatorial and the Theremin Cello
    • Edgard Varèse links (http://www.thereminvox.com/directory/62/)
    • A Letter (http://www.thereminvox.com/story/497/) to Leon Theremin by Edgard Varèse
  • Theremin.info: Edgard Varèse (http://theremin.info/content-8.html)
  • OHM- The Early Gurus of Electronic Music: Varese (http://www.furious.com/perfect/ohm/varese.html)



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