Olivier Messiaen 1908 - 1992


One of the major figures of 20th century music * Strove to understand the natural order of the world both in nature and in metaphysical terms * Main themes are spirituality in the form of Christianity and ornithology – the study of birds * A harmonist * Musical language characterized by tone color and by rhythm * Studied the rhythms of Indian music * Organist of the Church of the Holy Trinity in Paris from 1930

Works by Olivier Messiaen include:
Quartet for the End of Time (1940) for violin, clarinet, and piano
Vingt Regards sur l'Enfant-Jesus (1944) for piano
Turangalila Symphony (1946-48) for piano, onde Martenot, and orchestra
Le Reveil des oiseaux (1953) for piano and orchestra