Furrer, Beat, Swiss-born Austrian composer, conductor, and teacher; b. Schaffhausen, Dec. 6, 1954. He received training in piano at the Schaffhausen Cons. In 1975 he emigrated to Austria and studied composition (with Haubenstock-Ramati) and conducting at the Vienna Hochschule fur Musik, graduating in 1983. In 1985 he co-founded and became director of Klangforum Wien, and from 1992 he also taught at the Graz Hochschule fur Musik. He has made appearances as a guest conductor throughout Austria and Germany. In 1996 Furrer was the featured composer at both the Salzburg and Lucerne festivals.
DRAMATIC Die Blinden, music theater after Maeterlinck (Vienna, Nov. 25, 1989); Narcissus, opera (1992–94; Graz, Oct. 1, 1994). ORCH.: Tsunamis (1983–86; Wuppertal, Jan. 22, 1987); Sinfonia for Strings (1984); Tiro mis tristes reder (1984; Hannover, Nov. 10, 1986); Risonanze for 3 Orch. Groups (1988); Studie—Ubermalung (1989–90); Face de la chaleur for Flute, Clarinet, Piano, and 4 Orch. Groups (Lucerne, Aug. 30, 1991); Madrigal (1992); Nuun for 2 Pianos and Orch. (Salzburg, Aug. 16, 1996). CHAMBER: Frau Nachtigall for Cello (1982); Ensemble for 8 Instruments (1983); 2 string quartets (1984, 1988); Duo for 2 Cellos (1985); Trio for Flute, Oboe or Saxophone, and Clarinet (1985); Wie diese Stimmen for 2 Cellos (1985–86); Retour an dich, piano trio (1986); In der Stille des hauses wohnt ein Ton for Chamber Ensemble (1987); Epilog for 3 Cellos (1988); Gaspra for Ensemble (1988); A un moment de terre perdu for Ensemble (1990); Aer, trio for Piano, Clarinet, and Cello (1991); Time Out I for 10 Instruments (1995) and II for 8 Instruments (1995–96); Quartet for 4 Percussionists (1995); a due for Viola and Piano (1997); Piano Quintet (1997–98). KEYBOARD : Piano : Irgendwo fern for 2 Pianos (1984); Voicelessness: The Snow Has No Voice (1986). VOCAL: Illuminations for Soprano and Chamber Ensemble (1985); Dort ist das Meer—Nachts steig’ ich hinab for Chorus and Orch., after Neruda (1985–86); Ultimi cori for Chorus and 3 Percussion Groups (1987–88); Stimmen/Quartett for Chorus and 4 Percussionists (1995–96; rev. 1998); Aria for Soprano and Instruments (1998–99).
—Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire