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About the composer

Philippe Boivin was born in Metz in 1954. After a degree in musicology at the Université Paris-Sorbonne in 1975, he received his Certificat d'aptitude au professorat d'enseignement du second degré (CAPES) the following year. Following his studies in harmony with Bernaud Alain at the Paris Conservatoire (1977-79), he was a student of composition at l’École normale supérieure de Paris (1979-1981) with Max Deutsch. He also studied and practised the new technologies, following a course of Andre Riotte on the formalisation of musical structures at l’Université de Vincennes (1979) and immersed into the theme "Music and Mathematics" with Iannis Xenakis (1980). The following year, he participated in workshops for computer-aided composition at IRCAM and then moved to California in 1982, backed by a grant from the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs, to join the Center for Music Experiment at the University of San Diego. In 1983, he embarked on a research on personal computer-based music composition, a work that led to the design of the Opus software. Being sensible to issues of teaching and transmitting knowledge, Boivin has been very active as a pedagogue since the early 90s. He currently teaches at Aix-Marseille University in Southern France. Boivin's work, which mostly consists of chamber music, shows a great diversity of interests. His entire opus, however, could be characterised with one adjective: rigorous. This can be noted both in the precision of his style as well as in the painstakingly elaborated forms into which he pours his music. This quality, however, does not prevent the instruments from expressing lyrical, dramatic and even theatrical attitudes (information obtained from a biography of Philippe Boivin, from Centre de documentation de la musique contemporaine). Boivin is attracted by the composition of educational pieces, too, seeking in particular the relationship between composer and performers based on mutual listening. This is a process that was initiated by the experience gained from working with the double bass player Jean-Pierre Robert on the creation of ZAB.