Kaija Saariaho

kaija-saariahoBorn in 1952 in Finland, Kaija Saariaho lived a childhood embedded in music, playing several instruments. In parallel to musical studies, she started art studies, at the Fine Arts School of Helsinki, that she quickly quit to concentrate on music. At the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki, she studiedFa composition wtih Paavo Heininen, and later, in Darmstadt then in Fribourg, studied with Brian Ferneyhough and Klaus Huber.
Her works of the eighties are characterized by sensual writing, descriptive and lyrical, unfolding subtle transformations. Her research of new timbres has stimumlated her studies of new technics in the instrumental as well as the computer domain, for which starting in 1982, she initiated herself at Ircam. This practice constitutes an important element of her compositions.