Composition Department

IANNIS XENAKIS (IU faculty: 1967-1972)



Selected Compositions

Selected Discography



Iannis Xenakis (May 29, 1922 – February 4, 2001) was an ethnic Greek, naturalized French composer, and music theorist, and architect-engineer. He is commonly recognized as one of the most important post-war avant-garde composers.  Xenakis pioneered the use of mathematical models such as applications of set theory, varied use of stochastic processes, game theory, etc., in music, and was also an important influence on the development of electronic music.

Among his most important works are Metastaseis (1953–4) for orchestra, which introduced independent parts for every musician of the orchestra; percussion works such as Psappha(1975) and Pléïades (1979); compositions that introduced spatialization by dispersing musicians among the audience, such as Terretektorh (1966); electronic works created using Xenakis's UPIC system; and the massive multimedia performances Xenakis calledpolytopes. Among the numerous theoretical writings he authored, the book Formalized Music: Thought and Mathematics in Composition (1971) is regarded as one of his most important. As an architect, Xenakis is primarily known for his early work under Le Corbusier: the Sainte Marie de La Tourette, on which the two architects collaborated, and the Phillips Pavillion at Expo 58, which Xenakis designed alone.

Selected Compositions

Stage Works

Kraanerg (1968)
Antikhthon (1971) 

Vocal Music with Orchestra

Anastenaria: Procession aux eaux claires (1953)
Aïs (1980)
Cendrées (1973-74)
Pour la Paix (1981)
Idmen A/Idmen B (1985)
Sea–Nymphs (1994)


Metastaseis (1953-54)
Akrata (1964-65) 
Ata (1987) 
Sea-Change (1997) 
O-Mega (1997) 

Chamber Music

Eonta (1963-64)


Solo Music

Herma (1961)
Mists (1981)
A r. (Hommage à Ravel) (1987)
Naama (1984) 

Tape Music

Concret PH (1958)
Persépolis (1971)
Polytope II (1974)
La légende d'Eer (Diatope) (1977)

Selected Discography

Xanakis: Complete String Quartets - Mode, 2009
Xanakis: Works with Piano - Mode, 2010
20th Century: Xenakis - Atrees/Nomos Alpha - EMI Classics, 2010 
Xenakis: Metastasis - Le Chant Du Monde Fr, 1993 
Iannis Xenakis: Chamber Music, 1955-90 - Disques Montaigne, 2003 


Boosey and Hawkes