Stanford University Home

Stanford News Archive

Stanford Report, March 8, 2000

Brian Ferneyhough named Bonsall Professor in Music

Brian Ferneyhough, the William H. Bonsall Professor in Music, came to the Department of Music in January from the University of California-San Diego. A composer who is best known as a leader of the "new complexity" movement, Ferneyhough pushes the limits of the intricacy of individual instrumental writing.

Ferneyhough's works range from music for string quartets to opera and computer music, and he has held some of the most prestigious visiting positions open to composers, including the Lehrstuhl für Poetik at the Mozarteum in Salzburg. He also has been awarded such honors as the French government's Chevalier dans l'ordre des arts and des lettres.

Steven Hinton, chair of the Music Department, calls Ferneyhough "the foremost composer of his generation" and adds that he "can be compared with Pierre Boulez."

Composition students have praised Ferneyhough's ability to raise their works to higher levels and say that he is both accessible and generous with his time. SR