A French composer born in 1965 in Besançon.
After studying the piano, violin and harpsichord, Brice Pauset was taught composition and electroacoustic music by Michel Zbar (1984-1986). He was also interested in baroque music, early instruments as well as classical and medieval philosophy. In 1988 he entered the Paris Conservatory where he followed the composition classes of Michel Philippot, Gérard Grisey and Alain Bancquart. In parallel he studied composition with Franco Donatoni in Sienna. He took part in the composition and computer music course at Ircam (1994-1995) and later the composition session at the Abbaye de Royaumont.
His works are characterised notably by work on spatialisation, a complex polyphonic style, a complicity with the musical past as well as the existence of metaphysical significations. His music is chock full of textures, masses, powerful gestures yet also of refined details and a unique sense of colour. The orchestration of his symphonic music reflects his taste for the micro-articulations that transcend instrumental perception. Pauset composes works for all types of vocal and instrumental formations. These include String Quartet n° 2, first performed by the Quatuor Diotima at the Festival d'Automne in Paris (1996); Perspectivae sintagma I for piano Midi and electronics, first performed by Jean-Luc Plouvier at the Festival of Donaueschingen in Germany (1997); Symphony II ‘La liseuse’ for voice and spatialised orchestra, first performed by Marianne Pousseur, Caroline Chaniolleau and the Ensemble Intercontemporain conducted by Jonathan Nott at the Festival d'Automne in Paris (2003); Theorie der Tränen: Gesang for horn and piano, first performed by the ensemble Contrechamps at the festival Musica (2007); Symphony VI ‘Erstarrte Schatten’ for large orchestra, six solo voices and live electronics, first performed by the Neue Vocalsolisten and the Symphony Orchestra of the Bayerischen Rundfunks conducted by Peter Rundel at the festival Musica Viva in Munich, Germany (2009); Das Dornröschen for chorus, string quartet and orchestra, first performed by the Arditti Quartet, the WDR Rundfunkchor Köln and the WDR Sinfonieorchester Köln conducted by Matthias Pintscher at the Philharmonie of Cologne, Germany (2012); Les châtiments, opera first staged by the chorus of Dijon Opera and the Orchestre Dijon Bourgogne at Dijon Opera (2020).
Brice Pauset divides his time between composition and performance on the harpsichord and the piano of his own works and those of the baroque and classical repertories, æsthetic reflection and teaching. Since 2010 he he has been teaching composition at the Musikhochschule of Freiburg im Breisgau, where he also heads the department of contemporary music. Pauset has also been artistic director of the ensemble Contrechamps since 2012.