Louis Andriessen Timeline
A year by year alignment of Andriessen's life and works
The chronological list of works indicates the publisher of each work and provides links for further information on those published by Boosey & Hawkes
Born on 6 June in Utrecht into a musical family. His father Hendrik, a composer and organist at the cathedral, instils a fascination with Bach and a love of French music including that of Roussel, Duparc and Chausson. His uncle Willem is a composer and pianist, and his older brother Jurriaan a composer.
Netherlands liberated from Nazi occupation, and work of rebuilding Dutch artistic life and culture begins
Starts listening avidly to jazz on radio, including Stan Kenton. Family moves to The Hague.
Jurriaan returns from USA with collection of early jazz recordings, stimulating a lasting love of bop and cool, including Charlie Parker, Dizzie Gillespie and Miles Davis.
Composition studies with his father
Writes Sonate for flute and piano, the earliest piece to remain in his catalogue
for flute and piano Don/BH
Begins studies at The Hague Conservatory with Kees van Baaren. Fellow students include Peter Schat, Misha Mengelberg and Hans van Sweeden. Interest in avant-garde develops, particularly radical post-war aesthetic of Boulez and Stockhausen
for cello or double bass and piano BH
Composes Séries for two pianos, one of the first Dutch serial works
for two pianos Don/BH
Percosse for flute, trumpet, bassoon and percussion ms
for piano 4-hands BH
Joli commentaire for piano 4-hands ms
Paintings for flute and piano Moe
Wins Conservatory’s composition prize and embarks on studies with Berio in Milan and Berlin
Triplum per chitarra for guitar BvP
Canzone 3.Utinam for soprano and piano Don/BH
for orchestra Don/BH
(Concept I) for 2 pianos and ensemble Don/BH
Sweet for alto (treble) recorder Sch
Returns to the Netherlands and works as composer and pianist in Amsterdam
for clarinet and piano Don/BH
Souvenirs d’enfance Collection of works for solo piano Que
Anachronie I, with its references to Italian pop music and its collaging of styles, represents broadening of influences
The Garden of Ryoan-gi for 3 electric organs ms
Collaborative musico-political projects with Reinbert de Leeuw, Misha Mengelberg, Peter Schat and Jan van Vlijmen. A concert at the Carre Theatre is surrounded by police suspecting revolutionary activity
for wind ensemble, percussion and improvising ensemble Don/BH
Co-operative opera Reconstructie attempts break with conservative Dutch musical tradition. Protest at Concertgebouw concert with the group known as ‘Nutcracker’ against the orchestra’s then scant programming of living composers is quelled by the demonstrators’ ejection from the hall: the composer decides not to write again for conventional symphony orchestra
Opera (with Peter Schat, Jan van Vlijmen, Reinbert de Leeuw, Misha Mengelberg, Hugo Claus and Harry Mulisch) Don/BH
Choralvorspiele for barrel organ ms
The Nine Symphonies of Beethoven, with an ice cream bell challenging the hegemony of the classics, represents a crisis point: new avenues for a positive synthesis of music and politics are to open up
for wind ensemble, percussion and improvising ensemble Don/BH
Vergeet mij niet [Forget me not] for an oboe/piano player ms
In Memoriam Electronic Music Don/BH
[Perseverance] for wind ensemble Don/BH
Founds wind band De Volharding (Perseverance), to take music out to the people on the streets. The work of that name confronts the new avant-garde of American minimalism for the first time, and initiates a re-examination of unison writing. Starts work on De Staat, which is intended as an objective counterbalance to the ethereal minimalism of Terry Riley.
Composes Il Duce and Il Principe, to form a political triptych with De Staat
Il Duce Electronic music Don/BH
The Family Film music for ensemble ms
Begins teaching instrumentation at the Conservatory in The Hague
for two choirs and wind ensemble Don/BH
Symfonieën der Nederlanden [Symphonies of the Netherlands] for 2 or more wind bands Mol
Melodie for treble recorder and piano Sch
for any loud-sounding group of instruments Don/BH
Nederland, let op uw schoonheyt [Monuments of the Netherlands] for brass band and/or wind band Mol
Experiments at the Conservatory with music written for two symmetrical groups of instruments, leading to founding of Hoketus to rehearse and perform the music’s complex rhythmic interchanges. Completes De Staat whose premiere in Amsterdam provides a defining moment in Dutch new music.
for 2 groups of five instruments BH
Starts composing music theatre works for the group Baal, including Matthew Passion, Orpheus and George Sand.
Mattheus passie [Matthew Passion] Music theatre ms
De Staat wins the Matthijs Vermeulen Prize and the first prize of Unesco’s International Rostrum of Composers.
Orpheus Music theatre Asc
Appointed as composition teacher at the Conservatory in The Hague
for 12 solo string-players BH
Ende for recorder player, playing two alto recorders Asc
George Sand Music theatre ms
Erik Satie - Messe des Pauvres arrangement for mixed choir and ensemble Don/BH
Reinbert de Leeuw conducts premiere of De Tijd in The Hague. Hoketus tours a programme of Andriessen, Rzewski and Nyman around the UK on the Contemporary Music Network including a concert at the Huddersfield Festival.
for female choir and large ensemble (1980-1981) BH
Completes work with Elmer Schoenberger on Stravinsky study, The Apollonian Clockwork.
for harpsichord Don/BH
Begins work on De Snelheid. John Adams conducts members of the San Francisco Symphony in the US premiere of De Staat.
for solo piano BH
De Snelheid premiered by San Francisco Symphony under Edo de Waart. De Staat featured at Tanglewood under Gunther Schuller. Teaches at CalArts.
[Velocity] for large ensemble (1983-84) BH
Premiere of De Stijl in Amsterdam
for 4 women’s voices, female speaker and large ensemble (1984-85) BH
De Staat performed by New York Philharmonic under Schuller
[Double Track] for piano, harpsichord, glockenspiel and celesta Don/BH
De Lijn [The Line] for 3 flutes ms
Lectures on musical theory and composition in USA at Yale. Hoketus is disbanded. Work continues on De Materie, commissioned for the opening of the new Muziektheater in Amsterdam.
for tenor, 8 voices and large ensemble BH
for soprano, 8 voices and large ensemble BH
De Materie is premiered in staging by Robert Wilson, conducted by Reinbert de Leeuw
for reciter and ensemble Don/BH
Composes Facing Death for the Kronos Quartet
for 4 amplified strings or saxophone quartet BH
First collaboration with Peter Greenaway in video film, M is for Man, Music, Mozart, commissioned by BBC TV for the composer’s bicentenary. New series of recordings on Nonesuch inaugurated with De Staat.
for jazz singer and ensemble BH
Wins Matthijs Vermeulen Prize a second time. Signs publishing contract with Boosey & Hawkes. Reinbert de Leeuw conducts concert performances of De Materie in Amsterdam, The Hague and Utrecht.
for piano and toy piano BH
Festival weekend in The Hague includes the Residentie Orkest in Mausoleum and Nocturnen. Huddersfield Festival feature includes UK premiere of Hadewijch. Documentary film by Peter West and Steve Martland, A Temporary Arrangement with the Sea, is screened on BBC2 TV. Memory of Roses album recorded. Awarded the 3M Music Laureate, then the most prestigious Dutch arts prize.
for solo piano BH
Artistic Director of Meltdown festival at South Bank Centre in London. First UK performance of the complete De Materie consolidates reputation as a major international figure. Featured composer at Tanglewood Festival including US premiere of Hadewijch. Rosa, a first operatic collaboration with Peter Greenaway, is staged at Muziektheater in Amsterdam, with 10 sell-out performances.
[a horse drama] Music theatre work in 2 acts (1993-94) BH
Ensemble InterContemporain under David Robertson gives French premiere of De Staat, Ensemble Modern under Sian Edwards the German premiere of De Snelheid. California EAR Unit gives first performance of Zilver in Los Angeles.
[Willibrord’s Arrival] for carillon BH
Premieres of The Last Day in Amsterdam under Reinbert de Leeuw and TAO in Donaueschingen under Peter Eötvös. Featured composer at Settembre Musica in Turin, including Italian premieres of De Tijd and De Materie. US premiere of De Stijl at BAM Festival in New York and Finnish premiere of De Staat by Avanti. Lectures at Princeton in USA. Nonesuch releases complete recording of De Materie to great critical acclaim.
[Trilogy of The Last Day Part I] for 4 male voices, child’s voice, and large ensemble BH
Ensemble Modern gives first complete performance of Trilogy of the Last Day in Cologne, the Italian premiere of De Snelheid in Turin, and tours De Staat to Berlin, Frankfurt and Vienna.
[Trilogy of The Last Day Part III] for children’s voices and ensemble BH
Dutch premiere of complete Trilogy of the Last Day is 1000th VARA Matinée concert at the Concertgebouw. Revival of Rosa at Muziektheater in Amsterdam. Frank Scheffer film The Way, based on TAO, produced by Allegri Film and AVRO
for 4 women’s voices and chamber orchestra BH
Completes second operatic collaboration with Peter Greenaway, Writing to Vermeer, which is premiered in Amsterdam in December. Performances and record releases to celebrate 60th birthday.
Opera (1997-99) BH
Nonesuch releases first recording of ROSA. Writing to Vermeer staged at Adelaide Festival and Lincoln Center in New York. Collaborates with film-maker Hal Hartley on The New Math(s).
for voice, flauto traverso, violin, marimba and CD BH
Ars Musica festival in Brussels opens with an all-Andriessen concert. Featured composer at Queensland Festival in Brisbane.
[the wings of memory] for voice and piano BH
Andriessen festival at the South Bank Centre in London, including world premiere of La Passione and concert performance of Writing to Vermeer. New books on the composer published by Routledge and Arc.
for solo voice, solo violin and ensemble BH
BH=Boosey & Hawkes
Don/BH=published by Donemus and represented by Boosey & Hawkes in the UK and British Commonwealth, Eire, South Africa and the Western Hemisphere (including but not limited to the USA, Canada, Mexico, Central and South America).
Asc=Ascolta Music Publishing, Houten
BvP=Broekmans & van Poppel, Amsterdam
Moe=Hermann Moeck Verlag, Celle
Mol=Molenaar’s Muziekcentrale, Wormeveer
Que=E.M.Querido’s Uitgeverij, Amsterdam
RHE=Red House Editions, Footscray, Australia
Sch=Schott & Co Ltd, London