childhood, living first in Milan and Rome, then in London, Paris and
Mexico City, finally returning to France where he has resided since
1982. These numerous journeys during his formative years awoke a lively
and wide-ranging curiosity, and brought him into contact with composers
as diverse as Luigi Nono, Franco Donatoni, Brian Ferneyhough and Tristan
Murail. In his own compositions, however, he has always followed his
own path, independent of any particular stylistic trend.
The defining characteristics of Dazzi's compositions lie in his
eclecticism. His interest in minority languages is often evident in his
works, as for example in 'Contra suberna', which utilises the old French
langue d'Oc, or in 'Icnocuicatl', which sets pre-Columbian Mexican
texts. Tragedy and mythology are also two favourite themes in Dazzi's
compositions: his opera 'La Rosa de Ariadna' is inspired by the legend
of the Minotaur and in his vocal work 'Klage' he uses poems from 'The
Persians' by Aeschylus. In his instrumental works, Dazzi often fuses a
contemporary idiom with older musical forms and genres, as in
'Augenblick', which uses Indian music, 'Lichtzwang', which uses the
music of Scarlatti, and 'All'alba della trasparenza', where he scores
for the accordion.
Dazzi is regularly involved in education projects which include
professional performers, music students and amateurs, and has been
involved in projects embracing other art forms, including film, video
It is in the theatre, in the relationship between words and music, that
Dazzi's highly emotional and lyrical musical language is best expressed.
It is not surprising then, that he has collaborated as dramaturge
several times with Stefan Braunschweig, including operatic stagings:
Fenelon's 'Le chevalier imaginaire' (conducted by Peter Eötvös),
Bartok's 'Bluebeard's Castle' (conducted by Charles Dutoit) and
Beethoven's 'Fidelio' (conducted by Daniel Barenboim).
Gualtiero Dazzi's works have been extensively performed throughout
Europe, Japan, South and Central America and the United States.