Boesch, Rainer, Swiss composer, pianist, and teacher; b. Männedorf, Aug. 11, 1938. He received training in piano at the Geneva Cons, (diploma, 1960) and the Neuchâtel Cons, (diploma, 1965), and then in composition with Messiaen at the Paris Cons. (1966–68), where he received the premier prix in 1968 with the first electro-acoustic piece ever presented there. After serving as director of the Lausanne Cons. (1968–72), he headed the new music dept. of the Institut de Hautes Études Musicales (1973–75). He settled in Geneva, where he founded the Studio ESPACES in 1976, a teaching and research organization. He also taught at the Institut Jaques-Dalcroze from 1976, overseeing its research center from 1989. In 1985 he co-founded the Swiss Centre for Computer Music, which he subsequently served as co-director. Boesch’s large output embraces avant-garde usages, with a special regard for multimedia and electronic works.
Cello Sonata (1955); Piano Pieces (1955–92); String Quartet (1960–61); Désagrégation for 12 Clarinets, 2 Tubas, Percussion, and Tape (1968); Florès for Instrumental Ensemble (1968); Cendres, piano concerto (1968–69); Fêtes for Chorus, Mimes, and Tape (1972); Mécaniques for Tape (1973); Espaces, opera (1975); Transparences for Orch. (1977); Schriftzeichen für Kathrin for Women’s Voices, Piano, Orch., and Tape (1977); Tissages for Orch. (1978); “***” (Suite II), multimedia piece (1978–89); Wind Quintet (1980); Kreise for Wind Orch. (1986); Clavirissima for Piano and Computer (1987); Solisti for Flute, Bassoon, 2 Saxophones, Double Bass, and Piano (1991).
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire