Kagel, Mauricio Raúl (1931–2008) By Heile, Björn
Mauricio Raúl Kagel was an Argentine-German composer. One of the most influential composers of the post-war European avant-garde, Kagel was instrumental during the development from the serial composition of the 1950s into the radical experimentalism of the 1960s and ‘70s. A tireless and prolific innovator and polymath, Kagel often transcended traditional genres and artistic media, incorporating films, radio plays, experimental music theatre, and hybrid or mixed-media works. In addition, he created compositions in most traditional musical genres, from piano pieces and string quartets to operas. Many of his works deal with cultural, social, and political issues in allusive ways and derive their interest more from their conceptual nature than from their immediate esthetic effect, suggesting an intellectual kinship with similar tendencies in conceptual or performance art, among other genres.