(b. 31 July 1927, Moreni, Dâmbovița – d. 22 January 2008, Bucharest).
Romanian composer of mostly orchestral, chamber and choral works that have been performed throughout the world.
Prof. Niculescu studied at the Universitatea Națională de Muzică București from 1941–46 and civil engineering at the Universitatea Politehnica in Bucharest from 1946–50 before he studied composition with Mihail Andricu, harmony with Mihail Jora and piano with Muza Ghermani-Ciomac at the Universitatea Națională de Muzică București from 1951–57. He also attended a course in electronic music with Mauricio Kagel in Munich in 1966 and the Ferienkurse in Darmstadt from 1966–69.
Among his honours were a residency in Berlin as a guest of the Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst (1971–72), the Prix de l'Académie des Beaux-Arts (1972), the Koussevitzky International Critics Award (1985), and the Herder-Preis in Vienna (1994). He was named a corresponding member of the Academia Română in Bucharest in 1993 and was a full member from 1996–2008.
He was also active in other positions. He wrote numerous articles on aesthetics and worked as a researcher at the Institutul de Istoria Artei George Oprescu in Bucharest from 1960–63. He founded the International Week of New Music Festival in Bucharest in 1991 and later served as its director.
He taught piano from 1958–60 and later taught as a lecturer in analysis and composition at the Universitatea Națională de Muzică București from 1963–2008, where he was a professor from 1993–2008. In addition, he gave guest lectures in Zagreb in 1969, in Paris in 1989, in Valencia in 1991, and at the Ferienkurse in Darmstadt in 1992.
SELECT LIST OF WORKS
Cartea cu Apolodor (opera for children in 2 acts, libretto by Gellu Naum), 1974
Scènes, small orchestra (7 winds, trumpet, trombone, piano, celesta, xylophone, percussion, double bass), 1962
Symphonies for 15 Soloists, small orchestra (15 players), 1963
Unisonos I, 1970
Unisonos II, 1971
Ison Ia, small orchestra (14 players), 1973
Ison Ib, 1973
Symphony No. 1, 1975
Ison II, small orchestra (4 flutes, 4 French horns, 4 trumpets, 4 trombones, 6 percussion), 1977
Symphony No. 2, 'Opus Dacicum', 1980
Synchrony II, 'Omaggio a Enescu e Bartók', 1981
Symphony No. 3, 'Cantos', 1984
Symphony No. 4, 'Deisis', 1995
Symphony No. 5, 'Litanies', 1997
Undecimum, small orchestra (flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, French horn, trumpet, trombone, 2 violins, viola, cello), 1998
Prohodiri – A Romanian Requiem, mixed chorus, orchestra, 2000–03
Sonata, clarinet, piano, 1955
String Trio, violin, viola, cello, 1957
Inventions, clarinet, piano, 1965
Sextet, flute, oboe, English horn, 2 clarinets, alto saxophone, 1969
Triplum I, flute, cello, piano, 1971
Triplum II, clarinet, cello, piano, 1973
Echos I, violin, 1977
Synchrony I, any 2–12 players, 1979
Echos II, violin, synthesizer, 1984
Ricercare in uno, clarinet, violin, synthesizer, 1984
Duplum, cello, piano (+ synthesizer), 1984
Synchrony III, flute, oboe, bassoon, 1985
Hétérophonies for Montreux, flute, oboe, clarinet, French horn, bassoon, 1986
Synchrony IV, clarinet, piano, percussion, 1987
Incantations I, 6 percussion, 1991, revised 2000 (also version as Incantations II, percussion, 2000)
Sextuplum, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, violin, cello, percussion, 1993
Sequentia, flute, clarinet, violin, viola, cello, percussion, 1994
Cantata I (text by Nina Cassian), children's chorus/female chorus, orchestra, 1959
Cantata II (text by Gellu Naum), tenor, mixed chorus, orchestra, 1960
Cantata III, 'Răscrucee' (text by Tudor Arghezi), mezzo-soprano, flute, 2 oboes (2nd + English horn), 2 clarinets (2nd + bass clarinet), 1965
The Aphorisms of Heraclitus, 20 mixed voices, 1969
Invocatio, 12 mixed voices, 1989
Axion, female chorus, sopranino saxophone (+ alto saxophone, tenor saxophone), 1992
Psalm XII, 6 male voices, 1993