updated 1 January 2017
© Astrid Karger

Hugues Dufourt

French composer and philosopher born 28 September 1943 in Lyon.

Hugues Dufourt was born in Lyon in 1943. He completed his musical training at the Geneva Conservatory, studying piano with Louis Hiltbrand (1961-1968) and composition and electroacoustics with Jacques Guyonnet (1965-1970). He received his agrégation in philosophy in 1967 and began teaching at the University of Lyon, then entered the French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) in 1973. He was a member of the Ensemble L’Itinéraire, and became one of its directors 1976, a position he held until 1981. In 1977, he founded the Collectif de Recherche Instrumentale et de Synthèse Sonore (Instrumental and Sound Synthesis Research Collective). From 1982 to 1998 he directed the Recherche Musicale center for information and documentation of the CNRS, which became a joint research center under the aegis of the CNRS, the École Normale Supérieure, and the IRCAM. From 1989 to 1999, he founded and directed the Doctoral Program in Music and Musicology of the 20th Century at the École des Hautes études en Sciences sociales (EHESS), with support from the École Normale Supérieure and the IRCAM.

Dufourt has received many commissions from prestigious contemporary music ensembles and major orchestras in France and Italy. He was awarded the SACEM’s Grand Prix for Chamber Music in 1975, the Grand Prix de l’Académie Charles Cros in 1980, the Koussevitzky Music Foundation Award in 1985, the Prix du Jury of the Musique en Cinéma Festival in 1987, the SACEM Composers Prize in 1994, and the Prix du Président de la République for lifetime achievement, awarded by the Académie Charles Cros in 2000.

© Ircam-Centre Pompidou, 2017

By Martin Kaltenecker

Hugues Dufourt contributed to the spread and indeed to the very definition of the French school of Spectralism, which, in the 1970s, took as its point of departure the precise analysis of the inner life of sounds, visualized using a spectrogram and then by computer. The evolution of the “formants” of a harmonic spectrum was taken as a model the composer could use for instrumentation, or consider freely as base material. Contrary to serial music, described by Dufourt in 1979 as an “art of brilliance and contrast”, which combines heterogeneous parametric spaces and which “is based on an underlying violence, in that it must reduce and intersect competing and constraining systems,” spectral music begins by working on continuities, slow transformations, shifts. “The only characteristics that can be worked with are dynamic. They are fluent forms. Music is thought of in terms of thresholds, oscillations, interferences, oriented processes”. At the same time, this approach acknowledges that the new importance of percussion in the 20th century “provoked the resurgence of unstable acoustic forms that classical instrument-making had carefully attenuated: attack and decay transients, complex mass sounds, blurry processes. Auditory sensitivity may be said to have returned. It is now interested only in tiny oscillations, roughness, textures. Sound’s plasticity, its fleeting nature, its minute alterations, have taken on an immediate suggestive force1”.

Dufourt, unlike Murail or Grisey, was not a student of Messiaen, and as a composer, he starts from a broader, or more abstract, definition of the spectrum: what he seeks in it is not so much the charm of new and fascinating colors or pathways that indulge the listener’s perceptions, but the instability that timbre introduces into the art of orchestration, and the possibility of conceiving forms through the evolutions of masses and ruptures. Thus, Dufourt introduced René Thom’s theory of catastrophes into his compositions. From it, he created a typology of sequences based on crossing thresholds, overlapping, sudden changes, etc. As an orchestrator, he advanced toward zones of fragility, explored unorthodox pairings, with instrumental timbres that do not fuse, reading “Rimsky-Korsakov’s Treatise backwards”, as he put it2. This form of poetics was expressed in different ways, both in works where percussion played a central role – Erewhon (1976), a symphony for six percussionists and 150 instruments, or Saturne (1979), combining percussion and electronic instruments – as well as in later pieces that slowly kneaded, weighed out, turned over, and scrutinized infinite successions of harmonic objects; the chords are then “warped” by instrumentation that placed them at the boundary line between timbre and chord; in fact, as Dufort said in 1977, the orchestra “is still our best synthesizer”. In Surgir (1984), the orchestra is supposed to form its own coherent environment, a field or a material with its own laws, rather than translating or clothing itself in structures that were created outside of it, following other rules. “Its true domain is part of a tradition of energy that can only be rediscovered by radicalizing it. To write for an orchestra is to make sure that the dynamic, the whole, the synthesis, are what prevails. I sought out a grammar adapted to this explosive, unstable, or evolving material. None of the principles of writing with pitch at the center can resist the lava flow of the orchestra3”. The ensemble (97 musicians) also includes five percussion parts. The constant presence of the percussion, often woven in rolling, trembling, sonic fabrics, brings to the surface in an unexpected way the noise-like or “inharmonic” dimension of the overall sound, while also playing a symbolic (rather than purely acoustic) role. As the first twelve minutes of the work make plain, with slowly rising intensity, the percussion seems to surround the orchestra, which seems hunted, unsettled, almost besieged.

At the same time, timbre, for Dufourt, is more embedded in the Schoenbergian tradition of Klangfarbenmelodie (timbre melody): the notion of “inharmonic” timbre inspired his arrangement and his strange layering of the chord in space, without ever aligning with the microtonal bombilation spotlighted by the computer. If one analyses the morphology of the chords in Watery Star for eight instruments (1993), for example, one notices that the melodic figures that emerge from time to time are for the most part conjunct lines, but which avoid sequences of more than three chromatic pitches or whole tones, in order to sidestep any historicizing allusions. Indeed, there is a clear avoidance of any “classical” chord structure – meaning, an interval of an octave, an fifth, or a fourth between the lowest note and the one immediately above it; aggregates of two- or three-note clusters, placed in the low register of the chord (an “anti-tonal” layout, as well); or, to the contrary, clusters stretched over the entire sonic space in order to obtain an effect of distance; numerous unisons; a predominance of sequences that move forward using notes shared by both the chords and the harmonic pedals. The analysis confirms what Dufourt wrote in Musique, pouvoir, écriture: “As for myself, I never wanted to give up the freedom of articulation I feel is the best part of the Serialist legacy. And so I put together a grammar of pitches that was independent from the grammar of timbre, but able, where necessary, to be congruent with it. The composition of intervals as with chords respects the classic taboos. It avoids diatonic progressions, chromatics, consonant triads, scales of half- or whole-tones, fifths in the low register. The advantage of this method is that it achieves a veritable language of dissonance, and guarantees harmonic, monodic, and contrapuntal coherence 4”.

Music is presented here as a harmonic texture that is homogenous yet molded, held up by the work of timbral differentiation; all of this can be considered in terms of what Lachenmann referred to as Strukturklang, in other words, a structure intended to produce an overall sound for the entire piece. This, according to Dufourt, is based on a “dialectic of timbre and time. The notion of timbre includes all dimensions of writing and, with computers, can be understood in the reflected separation and conjunction of frequency and intensity. The concerted relationship between these two dimensions produces specific effects of iridescence on the sonic material. Both in large and small ensembles, timbre is characterized by its formidable solidity. It resists transformation: freedom slips into it by barely perceptible degrees. The Watery Star, Dédale, and Le Philosophe selon Rembrandt were in this way conceived as wholes that gradually differentiate without dissociating, similar to warp that is pulled apart and then weaves itself together again, without ever interrupting the forward motion of the fabric. The music is organized at a deep level according to a swirling motion that pushes past every limit. The unity of tone nevertheless protects the work from dissolving. The flow of temporal continuity would appear to remain congruent with the production of differences, the emergence of the heterogeneous”.

Scansion in Dufourt’s pieces is regular – often organized by “steps” comprising two, three, or four successive chords, followed by a breath mark on the score – and obsessively slow; the music interrupts itself from time to time to allow brief moments of agitation to pass – too brief to signal the existence of an independent formal section to the senses. Instead, they evoke short-lived flows of lava or bursts of flame erupting from an active volcano. More rarely, retreats occur (the bass clarinet solo at the end of Philosophe selon Rembrandt), or even moments of shadowy figuralism – in Les Chasseurs dans la neige, d’après Brueghel, for example, there is an allusion to church bells and extensive initial imagery, with iambic rhythms, timpani calls, walking or scurrying rhythms, fanfares made harsh with muted brass instruments and strident percussion sounds, or, in La Gondole sur la lagune d’après Guardi, a few dance steps as the piece opens, and floating, swaying rhythms as it draws to a close.

As Philippe Albèra has noted, “what is at issue for this kind of thinking is its ability to give rise to form, to sustain over lengths of time with no dramatization, with no perceptible articulations, nor moments of waiting and expectation capable of engendering the desire to know what will happen next, nor even the surprises that accompany them5”. But that is precisely what Dufort wants, to hold music in the oppressive balance of “neither…nor,” that stakes itself – here we might almost take up Jacques Derrida’s notion of différance — both on the constantly deferred event and the infinite differentiation of the sonic texture, which is the subsumption or reabsorption of all events: one cannot expect anything but that which occurs, for there will be nothing else. Musically, as the composer summarizes it, “the space is no longer the thought of an immobility. It is a form in the making. Change is no longer linked to trajectory, it presumes imperceptible transitions, unascribable shifts6”.

Here, Dufourt finds support and substantiation in pictorial art, drawing less on the subject of paintings than on the role of color and light in relation to the subject (with the exception of abstract painting, as in Lucifer, d’après Pollock), which play a comparable role to that of timbre in music. Thus, speaking of Tiepolo’s allegory of Africa (Africa, from the fresco Apollo and the Four Continents in the Würzburg Residence), whose pale light and “dense clouds of sulphur” inspired him, the composer has remarked, “Nothing is better adapted to suggesting space than color, which becomes the true medium of the musician. Colors, in music, depend on complex writing processes of which they are the highly integrated end result. The same chord may appear homogeneous on the surface and heterogeneous below, bright and pellucid at first glance and rough and dark in the twisted creases of its folds, like an emerging tension. Music is an art of alteration7”. References to painting and to images are manifold – Saturne was inspired by Erwin Panofsky’s celebrated iconology; Hommage à Charles Nègre was inspired by a photograph; La Maison du Sourd was inspired by the work of Goya, to give only a few examples. What is retained and transposed from these, however, would appear to be the more-or-less muted vibration of their colors, or a glimmering. In other words, what gives a painting its dynamic force produces near-stillness in music, a static quality that attempts to hold back sound in its flight.

This musical attitude means that in Dufourt’s theorization of his own work – whose grandeur and force of conviction do not require theorization to be appreciated – certain pathways can be established toward the political (a dimension Pierre-Albert Castanet has highlighted) as well as the aesthetic. Emotions of darkness, tension, melancholy, mute violence, are thus interpreted in one sense or another – either despair at the event or observation of an inevitable “dialectic of Enlightenment” à la Adorno, or the sublime darkness of an art that, in Rilke’s words, sees that “beauty is nothing but the beginning of terror”. What is certain, at any rate, is that Dufourt’s singularity within the French school of Spectralism is to be found in this (possibly “German”) theme of the negative: holding himself at a distance from Bergson’s élan vital, from faith in nature and the sovereign or hedonistic sequences of subjectivity – a legacy that would include Berlioz, Debussy, Ravel, Messiaen, Grisey, Murail, Dalbavie, and Pesson – Dufourt did not see color as a state of grace, but timbre as a form of labor: his, but also ours.

  1. Musique, Pouvoir, Ecriture, Paris, Christian Bourgois, 1991, p. 289s.
  2. Interview on Deutschland Radio Kultur, 1999.
  3. Notes for Surgir.
  4. Musique, Pouvoir, Ecriture, p.335s.
  5. Le Son et le Sens. Essais sur la musique de notre temps, Genève, 2007, Éditions Contrechamps, pp. 546.
  6. Notes for L’Afrique d’après Tiepolo.
  7. Ibid.

© Ircam-Centre Pompidou, 2008

Bibliographie sélective

I. Textes d’Hugues Dufourt
1. Livres

Ouvrages :

  • Hugues DUFOURT, Musique, Pouvoir, Ecriture, Paris, Christian Bourgois, 1991, 362 p.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, Musica, Potere, Scrittura, Traduzione dal francese di Ettore Napoli, Milan, Casa Ricordi, Coll. Le Sfere, 1997, 387 p.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, Essai sur les principes de la musique 1, Mathesis et subjectivité. Des conditions de possibilité de la musique occidentale, Paris, Editions mf, Collection répercussions, 2007, 392 p.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, La Musique spectrale, une révolution épistémologique, Sampzon, Delatour, coll. « Musique et Philosophie », 2014, 490 p.

Co-direction d’ouvrages collectifs :

  • Hugues DUFOURT et Joël-Marie FAUQUET (sous la dir. de), La Musique et le pouvoir, Paris, Aux amateurs de Livres, 1987, 205p.
  • Hugues DUFOURT et Joël-Marie FAUQUET (sous la dir. de), La Musique : du théorique au politique, Paris, Klincksieck, 1991, 401p.
  • Hugues DUFOURT et Joël-Marie FAUQUET (sous la dir. de), L’Esprit de la musique. Essais d’esthétique et de philosophie, Paris, Klincksieck, 1992, 402p.
  • Hugues DUFOURT et Joël-Marie FAUQUET (sous la dir. de), La musique depuis 1945 : matériau, esthétique et perception, Liège, Mardaga, 1997, 400 p.

Chapitre d’ouvrage :

  • Hugues DUFOURT, « Les Principes de la Musique », in Musique contemporaine : perspectives théoriques et philosophiques, sous la direction d’Irène Deliège et de Max Paddison, Liège, Mardaga, 2001, p.13-84.
2. Articles

On trouvera une bibliographie allant jusqu’à 1995 dans le livre de P.A.Castanet. Parmi les articles récents qui intéressent l’esthétique de Dufourt compositeur, signalons :

  • Hugues DUFOURT, « Les Bases théoriques et philosophiques de la musique spectrale », revue Kairos n°21/2003, « Philosophie et musique », Presses Universitaires du Mirail, pp.227-282.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, « Les Principes de la Musique sérielle », Archives de philosophie, t.64, cahier n° 2, avril-juin 2001, pp.361-374.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, « Idéologie et dialectique dans l’histoire de la Musique au XXe siècle », Bulletin de la Société Française de Philosophie, 92e année, n°2, séance du 24 janvier 1998, Paris, Vrin, 2001, 31p.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, « Gérard Grisey : la fonction constituante du temps », numéro spécial de Musicae Scientiae, The Journal of the European Society for the Cognitive Sciences : Discussion forum 3, Aspects du temps dans la création musicale (Michel Imberty éd.), 2004, pp. 47-70.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, « La Tempesta d’après Giorgione ou la musicalisation de la peinture », in Eutropia, n°2, revue publiée par le Bureau de coopération Linguistique et artistique de l’Ambassade de France en Italie, dir. Patrick Talbot, Quodlibet/La fosse aux ours, Marcerata/Lyon, Mars 2002, pp.175-188.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, « Temps et espaces de l’écriture musicale : de la notation à l’ordinateur », in Révolutions Industrielles de la Musique, coordonné par Nicolas Donin et Bernard Stiegler au sein des Cahiers de Médiologie / Ircam n°18, Fayard, Novembre 2004, pp. 67-74.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, « Du Romantisme à la période contemporaine : formalisme et subjectivité de la musique moderne », in Musique et Philosophie, Anne Boissière éd., Paris, Centre National de Documentation Pédagogique, 1997, pp. 135-152.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, « La Musique sur ordinateur : une sémantique sans sujet ? », in La Musique depuis 1945 : Matériau, perception, esthétique, dir. Hugues Dufourt et Joël-Marie Fauquet, Liège, Mardaga, 1997, pp. 211-226.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, « O Artificio da escrita na musica ocidental », in Debates, cadernos do programa de pos-graduaçao em musica, n°1, Centro de letras e artes uni-rio, Rio de Janeiro, août 1997.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, Tensioni barocche (I), trad. italienne de Maria Morazzoni, Musica/Realtà, rivista quadrimestrale, Anno XIX, numero 56, Luglio 1998, pp. 31-50, et Tensioni barocche (II), Musica/Realtà, numero 57, Novembre 1998, pp. 23-44, Libreria Musicale Italiana, EuresisEdizioni.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, « Beethoven : idéologie et stratégie du sublime », in Liber Amicorum Célestin Deliège, édité par Pascal Decroupet et François Nicolas, Revue Belge de Musicologie, LII, Bruxelles 1998, pp. 47-56.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, « Le Bauhaus et l’Ircam, de deux maisons de la Construction au XXe siècle », in Enseigner la composition, L’Ircam/L’Harmattan, 1998, pp. 89-118.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, « Les Origines grecques du concept d’Harmonie », in Musique, rationalité, langage, l’harmonie : du monde au matériau, sous la direction d’Antonia Soulez et Jan Sebestik, Cahiers de philosophie du langage n°3, Paris, L’Harmattan, 1998, pp. 13-42.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, « Pierre Schaeffer : le son comme phénomène de civilisation », in Ouïr, entendre, écouter, comprendre, après Pierre Schaeffer, Jean-Christophe Thomas et François Bayle éds., Paris, Ina - Buchet / Chastel, 1999, pp. 69-82.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, « Asthetik der Transparenz, Spektrale Muzik » (1979), traduction allemande de Martin Kaltenecker, in MusikTexte, Zeitschrift für neue Musik, Heft 79, Köln, Juni 1999, 76 p., pp. 37-39, également in Wien Modern, 27. Oktober bis – 26. November 2000 (Elektronik Raum « musique spectrale »), p.88-90.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, « Musique et psychologie cognitive : les éléments porteurs de forme », Les musiques et les sciences cognitives (Stephen Mc Adams et Irène Deliège, dir.), Bruxelles, Pierre Mardaga, 1988, pp. 327-334.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, « Les fonctions paradigmatiques de la musique chez Leibniz », in Les cahiers du CIREM, Publication de l’Université de Tours, n°35/36, Rouen, Mars-Juin 1995, pp.7-66.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, « Le dynamisme génétique du matériau musical et son mouvement générateur d’espace », in Musica/Realtà, Anno XXVI, numero 77 – Luglio 2005, Libreria Musicale Italiana, Euresis Edizioni, Rivista quadrimestale, direttore Luigi Pestalozza, pp. 35-62.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, « La philosophie de la musique de Célestin Deliège », in Circuit, Musiques Contemporaines, N°XVI volume 1, septembre 2005, Numéro spécial : « Autour du livre de Célestin Deliège : Cinquante ans de modernité musicale, de Darmstadt à l’Ircam », pp. 59-64.
II. Sur Hugues Dufourt
  • Philippe ALBÈRA, « Hiver vous n’êtes qu’un vilain ! Les Hivers de Hugues Dufourt », paru dans Dissonances, 72, 2002, p.10-12, en tant que critique de l’exécution intégrale de l’œuvre donnée dans le cadre du Festival d’Automne à Paris, 2002, réédité in Philippe Albéra, Le Son et le Sens. Essais sur la musique de notre temps, Genève, 2007, Éditions Contrechamps, pp. 545-548.
  • Philippe ALBÈRA, « Regard sur le passé. Un cycle pour piano de Hugues Dufourt », paru dans le programme du Festival d’Automne à Paris, 2007, réédité in Philippe Albéra, Le Son et le Sens. Essais sur la musique de notre temps, Genève, 2007, Éditions Contrechamps, pp. 549-552.
  • Michelle BIGET-MAINFROY, « An Schwager Kronos ou le retour au piano », in Hugues Dufourt. Les cahiers du Cirem, Centre International de Recherche en Esthétique Musicale, n°35-36, Publications de l’Université de Tours, 1995, pp. 143-152.
  • Pierre-Albert CASTANET, Hugues Dufourt. 25 Ans de musique contemporaine, Paris, Michel de Maule, 1995.
  • Pierre Albert CASTANET, « Hugues Dufourt : les années de compagnonnage avec l’Itinéraire (1976-1982) », in Vingt-cinq ans de création musicale contemporaine : l’Itinéraire en temps réel, Danielle Cohen-Lévinas, éd., Paris, L’Harmattan, 1998, pp. 15-39.
  • Pierre-Albert CASTANET et Thierry MIROGLIO, « ‘Plus Oultre’ de Hugues Dufourt, ou l’énergie sublimée » in Percussions, n°37, novembre/décembre 1994, pp. 22-28.
  • Pierre-Albert CASTANET, « Pulsion et création – L’œuvre musicale de Hugues Dufourt durant les années 1990 » in Dissonance, n° 71, octobre 2001, pp. 10-15.
  • Pierre-Albert CASTANET, « La poétique musicale de l’« Hommage à Charles Nègre » de Hugues Dufourt », in Hugues Dufourt. Les cahiers du Cirem, Centre International de Recherche en Esthétique Musicale, n°35-36, Publications de l’Université de Tours, 1995, pp. 111-120.
  • Célestin DELIÈGE, « Du sérialisme à l’informatique musicale. Digressions sur un canevas de Hugues Dufourt », in Hugues Dufourt. Les cahiers du Cirem, Centre International de Recherche en Esthétique Musicale, n°35-36, Publications de l’Université de Tours, 1995, pp. 67-80.
  • Andreas FERVERS, « Priorität der Farbgebung, Hugues Dufourts “The Watery Star“ », in MusikTexte, Zeitschrift für neue Musik, Heft 79, Köln, Juni 1999, pp. 31-36.
  • Andreas FERVERS, « Zur Musik von Hugues Dufourt », in Wien Modern 2000, Elektronik / Raum / « musique spectrale », Ein Festival mit Musik unserer Zeit, dir. Berno Odo Polzer, 27 Oktober bis 27 November 2000, pp. 87s.
  • Andreas FERVERS, « The Watery Star » (1993), in Hugues Dufourt. Les cahiers du Cirem, Centre International de Recherche en Esthétique Musicale, n°35-36, Publications de l’Université de Tours, 1995, pp. 135-142.
  • Martin KALTENECKER, « Spektrum des Spektralismus. Bemerkungen zu Bergson, Deleuze, Grisey und Dufourt », dans Freiräume der Neuen Musik, J.P.Hiekel et M.Demuth (éd.), Mayence : Schott, 2008.
  • Martin LALIBERTÉ, « Un principe de la musique électroacoustique et informatique et son incidence sur la composition musicale – Analyses et exemples », thèse de doctorat en Musique et usicologie du XXème siècle soutenue à l’École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales le 8 décembre 1994. Analyse musicale : Saturne, de Hugues Dufourt, pp. 281-344.
  • Martin LALIBERTÉ, « Orchestration, mixité et pianisme dans Saturne de Hugues Dufourt », in Hugues Dufourt. Les cahiers du Cirem, Centre International de Recherche en Esthétique Musicale, n°35-36, Publications de l’Université de Tours, 1995, pp. 85-110.
  • Jann PASLER, « Manifesto of the Music of our Times : Narratives without history in “L’Afrique et l’Asie d’après Tiepolo” », in Perspectives of New Music, vol. 49/2, 2011, p. 198-231.
  • Alain POIRIER, « En marge de la composition. A propos des écrits de Hugues Dufourt », in Hugues Dufourt. Les cahiers du Cirem, Centre International de Recherche en Esthétique Musicale, n°35-36, Publications de l’Université de Tours, 1995, pp. 81-84.
  • Michel RIGONI, « Le philosophe selon Rembrandt de Hugues Dufourt ou Rembrandt selon le musicien philosophe », in Hugues Dufourt. Les cahiers du Cirem, Centre International de Recherche en Esthétique Musicale, n°35-36, Publications de l’Université de Tours, 1995, pp. 121-134.
  • Martin ZENCK et Elisabeth OY-MARRA, «Natur durch Kunst erlebbar machen. Die überwältigende und erhabene Natur in der Sintflut von Nicolas Poussin und Hugues Dufourt », dans Klanglandschaften - Musik und gestaltete Natur, hg. von Jörn Peter Hiekel und Manuel Gerivnk, Hofheim 2008, Wolke-Verlag.
  • « Boulez-Dufourt, un analisi comparata di due importanti brami del repertorio contemporaneo per flauto », Revue musicale, n°421/424, éd. Richard Masse, Paris, 1991. Traduction italienne in « Materiali par la musica contemporaneo » (« Sonus » n°4, anno 2, Potenza, 1990).


  • Hugues DUFOURT, Burning Bright, Les Percussions de Strasbourg, 1 cd Percussions de Strasbourg, 2016, PDS116BB.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, Erlkönig, Marilyn Monken, piano, dans « Voix voilées », 1 cd Metier Sound & Vision, 2012, MSV28524.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, Lucifer d’après Pollock, Voyage par-delà les fleuves, Orchestre Philharmonique du Luxembourg, Pierre-André Valade, direction, 1 cd Timpani, 2012, TIM1C1195.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, L’Afrique d’après Tiepolo;L’Asie d’après Tiepolo, ensemble recherche, 1 cd Kairos, 2010, 0013142KAI.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, Les Météores : L’Origine du monde ; Hommage à Charles Nègre ; The Watery Star ; Antiphysis, Ancuza Aprodu piano, Fabrice Jünger flûte, Ensemble Orchestral Contemporain, direction Daniel Kawka, Audio Sismal Records (DISTR’ART), 2008.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, La ligne gravissant la chute, hommage à Chopin, dans “Chopin / Dufourt” Sarkechik, avec Frédéric Chopin, Etudes opus 10 et Quatre ballades, Nima Sarkechik, piano, Zig-Zag Territoires, 2008, ZZT080401, distr. HM.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, La Cité des Saules for electric guitar and sound transformation, in Ceci n’est pas une guitare, Emanuele E. Forni, guitars, Stradivarius, 2007, STR 33775.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, Le Cyprès blanc ; Surgir, Gérard Caussé, Orchestre Philharmonique du Luxembourg, Pierre-André Valade, dir., 1 Cd Timpani, 2007, 1C1112.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, Quatuor de Saxophones, The Amstel Soxophone Quartet, 1 CD Amstel Records, 2005, AR 004.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, Les Hivers : Le Déluge d’après Poussin, Le Philosophe selon Rembrandt, Les Chasseurs dans la Neige d’après Brueghel, La Gondole sur la Lagune d’après Guardi, Ensemble Modern de Francfort, direction : Dominique My, 3Cds aeon, 2002, AECD 0209.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, La Maison du Sourd ; Lucifer d’après Pollock, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, Pierre-Yves Artaud, Emilio Pomarico, 1Cd Accord, 2001, 461 947-2.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, Erewhon, Les Percussions de Strasbourg, Lorraine Vaillancourt, direction, 1 Cd Accord Una Corda Musidisc (MFA) - Universal, 2000, n° 465 716-2.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, An Schwager Kronos (1994), Par Eiko Shiono, pianiste, in Eiko Shiono, Piano Recital, Japon, JASRAC, 1999, R-9980236.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, Dédale, opéra en trois parties, Bruno Ranc, Stéphanie Révidat, Stéphanie Moralès, Hjördis Thebault, Jean-Baptiste Dumora, Jérôme Varnier, Guillaume Andrieux ; Orchestre, Maîtrise et Atelier lyrique de l’Opéra National de Lyon (Nicolas Porte et Christophe Bernollin, chefs de chœur) ; Claire Gibault, direction, 2 Cds MFA - Radio France, 1998, n° 216027/28.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, The Watery Star ; An Schwager Kronos ; L’Espace aux Ombres, Quatuor de saxophones, Claude Delangle, Daniel Petitjean, Daniel Gremelle & Jacques Baguet, saxophones ; Ensemble Fa, Dominique My, piano et direction, 1Cd Accord - Una Corda, 1998, 465 715-2.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, Saturne ; Surgir, Ensemble l’Itinéraire, Orchestre de Paris, Peter Eötvös, Claude Bardon, 1Cd Accord - Una Corda, 1993, 465 714-2.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, Sombre journée dans Les percussions de Strasbourg, avec des pièces de Yoshihisa Taira, Philippe Manoury, 2 Cds Philips classics, 1993, n° LC 0305.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, Quatuor de saxophones, Ars Subtilior, par le quatuor XASAX, production de la WDR, hat[now]art 107. P + C 1998, 1998, n° LC 6048.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, Plus – Oultre, par Thierry Miroglio, CD Salabert actuel M.F.A., Paris, 1994, n° SCD 9411.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, Hommage à Charles Nègre, in CD Ars Musica’90, 1990, Ric. 073052.
  • Hugues DUFOURT, Antiphysis, Ensemble intercontemporain, dirigé par Pierre Boulez, Istvan Matuz, flûte soliste, in Compact Disc Erato, 1988, ECD 88261, RC 750, Paris.

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