Michel Chion: What should be kept? What should be discarded or erased? The choice of a musique concrète composer

Unlike many of his colleagues, one particular musique concrète composer, that is me, has decided to erase most of the scraps and realisation elements of his works, composed between 1970 and 2022, and on the other hand to prepare the conditions of conservation of his finished works. He explains why and tells of the lesson he has learned from the examples of other composers, such as Luc Ferrari, Bernard Parmegiani and Pierre Henry. He also feels happy that his erased tapes can be re-utilized by other, younger composers.

Clarification: I call musique concrète the art of fixed sounds (fixed sounds is a term I coined in 1988); others call it acousmatic music, it is only a difference in name, not in nature. It can be made on any audio support.


Michel Chion

French, born 1947, concrete music composer, writer, film and video maker, researcher; website: michelchion.com