Cursus Program on Composition and Computer Music

Serving the institute’s missions of research and creation, the Cursus program for composition and computer music is the flagship program in the broad range of IRCAM’s educational activities. Initiated in 1990 under Pierre Boulez, numerous composers (such as F. Baschet, F. Bedrossian, O. Bianchi, E. Campion, R. Cendo, F. Filidei, J. Fineberg, S. Gervasoni, C. Iannotta, P. Jodlowski, M. Lanza, B. Mantovani, Y. Maresz, B. Pauset, H. Parra, Y. Robin, L. Ronchetti, G. Spiropoulos, C. Trapani, F. Verunelli) have expanded their musical thinking thanks to the technological tools they have acquired through the Cursus program, the challenge being to consider that technology is not an end in itself but a means to serve musical and artistic thinking.

A progressive 12-month program (from October to September of the following year) allows students to acquire technical and computer autonomy.

Déroulé pédagogique du Cursus

Composers are trained on IRCAM software applied to music composition (Max, OpenMusic, Modalys, TS2, Spat...) in a stimulating environment full of encounters and exchanges with researchers, developers, sound engineers, computer music producers, and composers working in our labs and studios. Practical work in the studio, improvisation workshops with electronics, and seminars with guest artists complete the training.

The year is punctuated by week-long workshops (moving images, written poetry, dance, visual arts) that allow the students to become familiar with the challenges of interdisciplinarity projects.

At the end of each step in the program, students present "mini-projects" that demonstrate what they have learned and prepare them for the production of their final project, which will be shown to the public during IRCAM's concert season. The final performance takes place during a concert in IRCAM's concert hall—the Espace de Projection—scheduled to reopen after a long period of renovations.

In a constant effort to renew and expand the scope of the final projects, the final composition can now take several forms: a musical piece, an installation, a purely electronic or electroacoustic work integrating dance, image, text, poetry... The forms and formats remain very open.

The artists participating in the performance of the Cursus projects are young professionals chosen according to the students' projects.

Students enrolled in the Masters of Music program at the Conservatoire national supérieur de musique et de danse de Paris, the Haute École de musique de Genève, the Académie supérieure de musique de Strasbourg - HEAR, the Conservatoire national supérieur de musique et de danse de Lyon, and the Pôle supérieur d'enseignement artistique Paris Boulogne-Billancourt (PSPBB) can validate their 1st or 2nd year of the Master's program by following IRCAM’s Cursus.

IRCAM is a partner of the Cité internationale des arts for the residencies of the composers of the Cursus. Candidates selected for the Cursus have the possibility of having a studio at the Cité internationale des arts for the duration of their training, the monthly fees remaining at their expense.

Over the past 30 years, the Cursus program on composition and computer music has trained 350 composers from 50 different countries. 50 public Cursus performances have been held in our musical seasons.

The 30th anniversary of the Cursus and emerging artists

Cursus Educational Team

Simone Conforti, Jean Lochard, Grégoire Lorieux, Sébastien Naves
computer-music designers lecturers
Pierre Jodlowski composer associated with the Cursus
Philippe Langlois education department director
Murielle Ducas educational coordination manager

Public composers (under 35 years old)
Contact 01 44 78 48 17 | cursus (at) ircam.fr

  • Concert du Cursus, ManiFeste-2021  © Ircam - Centre Pompidou, photo : Philippe Barbosa
    Concert du Cursus, ManiFeste-2021 © Ircam - Centre Pompidou, photo : Philippe Barbosa
  • Concert du Cursus, ManiFeste-2021  © Ircam - Centre Pompidou, photo : Philippe Barbosa
    Concert du Cursus, ManiFeste-2021 © Ircam - Centre Pompidou, photo : Philippe Barbosa
  • Concert du Cursus, ManiFeste-2021  © Ircam - Centre Pompidou, photo : Philippe Barbosa
    Concert du Cursus, ManiFeste-2021 © Ircam - Centre Pompidou, photo : Philippe Barbosa
  • Concert du Cursus, ManiFeste-2021  © Ircam - Centre Pompidou, photo : Philippe Barbosa
    Concert du Cursus, ManiFeste-2021 © Ircam - Centre Pompidou, photo : Philippe Barbosa
  • Concert du Cursus, ManiFeste-2021  © Ircam - Centre Pompidou, photo : Philippe Barbosa
    Concert du Cursus, ManiFeste-2021 © Ircam - Centre Pompidou, photo : Philippe Barbosa
  • Pierre Jodlowski, compositeur associé au Cursus  © Gilles Vidal
    Pierre Jodlowski, compositeur associé au Cursus © Gilles Vidal
  • Philippe Langlois, directeur du département pédagogie  © Ircam - Centre Pompidou, photo : Philippe Barbosa
    Philippe Langlois, directeur du département pédagogie © Ircam - Centre Pompidou, photo : Philippe Barbosa

The 2021.22 Class

Selected Composers for Cursus 2021.22

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Sebastian Adams

Sebastian Adams (Ireland, b. 1991) is an Irish composer, performer and artistic director with broad interests that include experimental text pieces, early music and physical limitations. His output includes everything from orchestral music to installat...
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Utku Asuroglu

Utku Asuroglu’s (Turkey, b. 1986) works have been featured at festivals such as Darmstädter Ferienkurse, Donaueschinger Musiktage Next Generation, Gaudeamus Muziekweek, Wittener Tage fur neue Kammermusik, ManiFeste IRCAM, MATA Festival, Royaumont, ISCM...
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Basile Chassaing

Musicien issu du jazz et des musiques improvisées, Basile Chassaing (France, né en 1986) s’est formé à la composition auprès de Jean-Luc Hervé, Roque Rivas (Pôle supérieur Paris-Boulogne-Bill...
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Sachie Kobayashi

Sachie Kobayashi (Japon, née en 1990) a suivi des études de composition à la Haute École de musique de Genève avec Michael Jarrell, Luis Naón et Gilbert Nouno. Elle complète actuellement sa formation par...
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Matthias Krüger

Matthias Krüger (Allemagne, né en 1987) a étudié la composition avec notamment Johannes Schöllhorn et Fabien Lévy, ainsi que les langues romanes. Il a reçu de nombreux prix et bourses, dont un 2e prix au con...
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Filippos Sakagian

Filippos Sakagian (Greece, b. 1992) is composer and visual artist based in Paris. His most recent works are characterized by his deep interest in Greek and Zoroastrian archaic traditions and esotericism. He is currently studying composition with Stefan...
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Aida Shirazi

Aida Shirazi (Iran, b. 1987) is a composer of acoustic and electroacoustic music. Her music for solo instruments, voice, ensemble, orchestra, and electronics, mainly focuses on timbre for organizing structures that are often inspired by language and li...
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Qingqing Teng

Qingqing Teng (Chine, née en 1990) travaille dans différents champs de la création sonore : musique acousmatique, mixte, électronique expérimentale, installation sonore et musique pour la vidéo d’art. Ell...
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Di Zhao

Di Zhao (Chine, née en 1995) est diplômée du Xinghai Conservatory of Music en Chine. Elle poursuit sa formation, depuis 2019, à l’University of Music and Performing Arts Stuttgart (HMDK Stuttgart) en Allemagne, aupr&egr...
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Julie Zhu

Julie Zhu (Unites-Stated, b. 1990) is a composer, artist, and carillonneur. Her work is visual and aural, operating on an expansive definition of score, striving for the unexpected obvious and expressive absurd. Her scores range from hair cast in clea...

Episodes about IRCAM's Cursus


Apply to the Cursus Program

The call for applications for Cursus 2022.23 is closed.

Applicants

Applicants must be under 35 years old.
There are no applications fees
General Terms and Conditions

Calendar

The call for applications for Cursus 2022.23 is closed.

Application File

Your dossier must include:

  • A copy of valid ID or passport
  • A detailed curriculum vitae
  • The list of professional experiences and awards
  •  A cover letter
  • One or several letters of recommendation 
  • Three recent works, at least one with electronics (score, audio recording, video, etc.)
  •  The URL to download a patch for one of your compositions (Max or any other real-time software) from the platform of your choice. Remember to give a permanent URL that does not require a password.

For non-Francophone applicants: a copy of your TEF exam (level B2) or equivalent diploma or any other document proving an equivalent level of oral comprehension.

Conditions for Applicants and Selected Candidates 

10 places are available
Registration fees: 2,000€ (includes the Premium Individuel membership to the IRCAM Forum for 2 years) 

Applicants selected for the Cursus  program must confirm their participation in writing  and commit to take on any other professional engagements during the program. Classes are held at IRCAM from Monday through Friday, from 10am to 1pm and from 2:30 to 5:30pm. There are two weeks of vacation in December for the holidays.

Scholarships

IRCAM does not give out any scholarships or pay for any travel, but can assist you when looking for financial aid. The Cursus program is considered to be continued professional training.
Contact: cursus (@) ircam.fr

Applicants selected for the Cursus program have the possibility, upon request, to be housed at the Cité internationale des arts de Paris. They will have a studio/room throughout the program. Monthly housing fees are paid by the students.

Furthermore, applicants selected for the Cursus program signed up in the Sacem repertory are eligible for a scholarship. Contact the Sacem directly to request a dossier.

Accessibility

For more information about accessibility, please contact us at cursus ( at ) ircam.fr.

Complaints

For any complaints, please contact IRCAM through our online complaint form.