Ștefan Niculescu

(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.





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

Hétérophonie, 1967

Formanti, 1968

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

ProhodiriA 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


Tastenspiel, 1968