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* 1928 near Cologne; studied at the Conservatory and the University of Cologne; first professional contacts to the Electronic Studio of WDR in Cologne in 1951; 1950–1953 studies with Pierre Schaeffer and Olivier Messiaen in Paris; 1953 permanent collaborator of the WDR-Studio; 1963–1977 artistic director of the studio to which he has kept close ties until today; teacher at the Darmstädter Ferienkurse since 1957; 1971–1977 Professor for composition in cologne.
Stockhausen is widely acclaimed as composer and theorist. He has pioneered electronic music, new uses of physical space in music, open forms, live-electronic performance, ´intuitive music´ and many other important developments in music after 1950. In his music and in his writings, he has evolved a uniquely coherent system of gerneralizations from the premises of total serialism, paying attention to aesthetic and philosophical consequences as well as to matters of technique and music theory.