Italian composer born 29 January 1924 in Venice; died 8 May 1990 in Venice.
Luigi Nono studied law at the University of Padua and composition (as an auditor) with Gian Francesco Malipiero at the Benedetto-Marcello Conservatory in Venice. In 1946, he met Bruno Maderna, marking the beginning of a long friendship and a period of intense study (including treatises of medieval music, enigmatic Franco-Flemish canons, Hindemith, Dallapiccola, etc.), notably at the Biblioteca Marciana. In 1948, Nono and Maderna attended conducting classes in Venice with Hermann Scherchen; Nono accompanied the conductor on tour, allowing him to familiarise himself with works by Schoenberg, Webern, and Bartók.
In 1950, Nono attended Darmstadt, where he studied with Varèse and developed a friendship with Karl Amadeus Hartmann. Following the premiere of his Canto Sospeso, Nono would himself teach classes at Darmstadt on Schoenbergian serialism, as well as presenting two influential conferences co-written with his student Helmut Lachenmann: “History and the Present in the Music of Today” (1959) and “Text—Musik—Gesang“ (1960), the latter of which strongly rebuked Stockhausen’s critique of Canto Sospeso.
Nono joined the Italian communist party in 1952. On 12 March 1954, he attended the premiere of Stravinsky’s Moses and Aron in Hamburg. On this occasion, he met Nuria Schoenberg, daughter of Arnold Schoenberg, whom he married the following year. During a trip to Prague in 1958, where he discovered the Laterna magika (considered to be the world’s first multimedia theatre) and the scenographic work of Josef Svoboda, Nono’s music was harshly criticised by the socialist realists. This did little to deter him from returning to the Eastern Bloc; he again spent time there in 1960 and 1963. On the latter trip, he visited Moscow, where he met with Edison Denisov, Alfred Schnittke (of whom he was severely critical), and pianist Marina Youdina, and Tallinn, where he presented his works, along with those of Berio and Donatoni, to Arvo Pärt. Nono also regularly travelled to East Berlin to visit his friend and colleague, Paul Dessau.
In 1961, in a matter of just a few months, Nono completed Intolleranza 1960, the first of his azione scenica [“staged actions”]; the work’s premiere at La Fenice caused a scandal. While teaching occasionally at the Dartington Summer School of Music and the University of Helsinki, starting in 1962, Nono devoted considerable effort to organising (along with critic and musicologist Luigi Pestalozza) regular concerts and debates in Italian factories. In 1965, he travelled to Boston for the stormy United States premiere of Intolleranza 1960 (conducted by Maderna), and to Los Angeles, where he visited the home of Schoenberg. Following discussions with Erwin Piscator about life in Weimar in the 1920s and 30s, Nono collaborated with writer Peter Weiss to create incidental music for fixed media for the play Die Ermittlung [“The Investigation”], and with the Living Theater on A floresta é jovem e cheja de vida, a scenic work for three speakers, soprano, clarinet, and tape (produced at the RAI Phonology Studio in Milan, where Nono worked regularly throughout the 1960s).
During a three-month trip to South America in 1967, Nono taught classes in Argentina and Peru, where he was arrested and expelled for openly expressing support for the release of political prisoners. In Cuba, he met Fidel Castro and discussed the work of Varèse with novelist/musicologist Alejo Carpentier. He returned to South America in 1968 and in 1971, when he met with Luciano Cruz, a member of the Revolutionary Left Movement in Chile (who was killed soon afterwards), and in 1983 to attend a congress of the “Artistas Trabajadores de la Cultura”. In February 1968, Nono, along with political activist Rudi Dutschke, took part in the Internationale Vietnamkongress in West Berlin. In the Autumn of the same year, he refused to participate in the Venice Biennale out of solidarity with the student movement. Nono’s second azione scenica, Al gran sole carico d’amore, was the result of a collaboration with Youri Lioubimov, who was Director of the Taganka Theatre in Moscow at the time.
Shortly thereafter, Nono suffered a major crisis, which was resolved in part by his contact with philosopher Massimo Cacciari. Hölderlin’s analytical writings, experimentation with live electronics, and the study of Jewish and Greek cultures informed the composition of both Fragmente-Stille, an Diotima (1979-80) for string quartet and the opera Prometeo (1981-84); the latter work, and indeed the majority of Nono’s music from the 1980s, was premiered in collaboration with the Heinrich-Strobel Foundation Experimental Studio. Nono was largely based in Berlin from 1986 to 1988 following an invitation from the DAAD. In July 1989, at Centre Acanthes (then in Villeneuve-lès-Avignon), he taught his final classes. Requiring hospitalisation in Paris due to cancer, Nono died on 8 May 1990 in Venice.
© Ircam-Centre Pompidou, 2019
By Laurent Feneyrou
Under the influence of Luigi Dallapiccola and Gian Francesco Malipiero, of Bruno Maderna and Herman Scherchen, Nono set out to renew the musical traditions of his native Venice—notably Gabrieli, the theorists and madrigalists of the Renaissance—through the prism of the twelve-tone technique invented by Schoenberg. His brand of serialism, designed with Maderna as forma mentis —a serialism that Dallapiccola termed a ‘state of spirit’—positioned him on the fringes of the Darmstadt school, since he rejected all attempts to reduce his language to mathematical manipulations or arithmetic. Condemning the oversimplification of Schoenberg and Webern‘s principles to such purely morphological dimensions, Nono demonstrated conversely the impossibility of imposing technical limits on the appraisal of musical language. His aim was the essence, not the technique, of serialism—his ideological destiny. He was fond of Schoenberg’s work, especially A Survivor from Warsaw, which he considered as a sort of completion of a third act of _Moses and Aron_–as a “new moment of slavery and subjected barbarity (the narrator’s recitation, in Sprechgesang) followed by the unifying prayer Shema Israel (the spoken choir in the finale), resolving the opera less as a repeating ritual, but more in the spirit of continued research”1–but also Ode to Napoleon Bonaparte, whose tone-row provided material for Nono’s first piece: Variazioni canoniche sulla serie dell’op. 41 di Arnold Schoenberg. In Schoenberg’s two manifestos, Nono discerned, along with Maderna, the moral and creative exigence of a musician in search of a historical solution—not an individual one—to the crisis of musical language and social structures.
Throughout the 1950’s, Nono’s serialism can be divided into three phases: the first, from his earliest works to Liebeslied; the second, the closest to total serialism, including Canti per 13, Incontri, and Il canto sospeso; the third, beginning with Varianti. In Epitaffio a Federico Garcia Lorca, a total division of the chromatic (following Webern’s example) delineates the four sections of Tarde, the first section of España en el corazon. Similarly, on the three sections of Liebeslied, the first two use only six pitches. This discourse is created by small cells derived from ‘magic squares.’ During Nono’s first phase, three pitches, rhythms, or dynamics labelled 1, 2, and 3 generate the following combinations which the composition must then follow: 123, 132, 213, 231, 312, and 321. Nono does not operate directly on pitch, rhythm, or dynamics, but often interpolates a hidden layer of ars combinatoria. In Nono’s second phase, Incontri uses, for the first time, a complete tone-row with a Webern-esque character (B flat - C - C# / F# - G - E / D - E flat - F / A - B - A flat), but his treatment of the series takes a further step away from Webern’s, as Nono repeats the series verbatim, without any transposition or permutation. Throughout the 1950’s, Nono uses almost exclusively a Allintervallreihe: A - B flat - A flat - B - G - C - F# - C# - F - D - E - E flat, an interpolation of two chromatic scales in contrary motion—a strict chromaticism which would lead towards, throughout the sixties, the usage of clusters and the verticalization of the tone-row, articulated rhythmically by Fibonacci sequences. In this series, when one regulating and non-thematic function would be transformed into superstructure, it would be dominated by what Nono considered to be the fundamental element of serialism: the interval. “From the outset, Nono’s compositional technique distinguished itself by the historical necessity to free himself not only from all thematic treatment, but above all from a thematic reflection that one cannot disassociate from tonal thought. The note, understood primarily as an isolated event in the fundamentally pointillistic flow of music, whose exact qualities can never be precisely reproduced, had acquired a complex relationship to its environment, robbing all sense of momentary gesture in favor of a constellation of single notes. Not only is a note reduced to only its local value, but it became part of a whole as was the case in early music.”2 By reducing the series, rendering it ambiguous, Nono eliminates every traditionally melodic dimension of the discourse. His changes elevate secondary events such as dynamics, timbre, and density to the place of essential elements. From this point on, sound, even when isolated, is a complex entity, with an internal development susceptible to associations–a sound opposed to the sounds hermetically concealed within itself. Here a third strain of serialism is born, with an electronic dimension, which beginning with Varianti, and even more in Cori di Didone and Composizione per orchestra n. 2 – Diario polacco ‘58, no longer acting exclusively on intervals, but directly on the body of sound, following the example of Varèse (whose seminars Nono attended at Darmstadt). The first measures of Varianti demonstrate this rupture: a single pitch is distributed simultaneously amongst several different instruments, rhythms, and dynamics, generating a sort of aura.
With La Victoire de Guernica after Paul Éluard, or Il canto sospeso based on fragments of letters from members of the European resistance who had been condemned to death, or with La terra e la compagna on poems by Cesare Pavese, what could be considered as humanism, if not existentialism–and above all a denunciation of Nazi and fascist crimes–would be transformed throughout the 1960s into a condemnation of a system of domination, of the violence of the colonial state, beginning with the ‘action scénique’ Intolleranza 1960: A Rebel, in the first version of the libretto, becomes an Algerian in the final version, firmly situating the piece in a historical time frame and opening the way for the incorporation of documents, tracts, graffiti, or declarations of workers and revolutionaries. Culture has a function in the class war: neither the ivory tower of “art for art’s sake” nor an exclusively aesthetic revolution, nor the condemnation of all culture as necessarily bourgeois and elitist. Protest, confrontation, contradiction, the final work would be at once for the revolution, art of the revolution, and revolutionary art itself. Nono specifies a Gramscist, if not Leninist, angle which implies the idea of an organic intellectual, rooted in the needs and the values of the working class, making these the themes of his life, his battles, and his hopes, and ensuring that his work is experienced by his class. Thus in La fabbrica illuminata for voice and magnetic tape, a part with no electronic, vocal, or choral sources), metallic sounds, borrowed from the daily experience of the working world, with the spectacular acoustic image of mills and giant furnaces recorded in the Italsider factory in Genoa–a material defined by its social context, related to labor conditions. After the man-musician of committed art in the 1950s, the composer wished, actively and consciously, to become a soldier, a “guerillero.” Theater plays a fundamental role in this change of direction: political theater, with Erwin Piscator, a theater of sensations, in the sense of Sartre, or a catharsis, a social conscience, with the outcome determined by the audience, a theater finally modifying the visual and sonic spaces of traditional representation, privileging not opera but stage action–an interdependence that ceaselessly redefines the constituent elements of the performance. Furthermore, with La fabbrica illuminata, A floresta é jovem e cheja de vida, and Contrappunto dialettico alla mente, Nono borrows the tools of the phonology studio at RAI (Milan): every ideological culture must in fact know, analyze, and use the entire range of means at his disposition on technical, linguistic, and expressive levels. Consequently, the composer grabs hold of these tools, turning them against the system and inventing new expressions: “Revolutionary work presupposes the knowledge and use of science’s most recent conquests; in my case, this means the usage of a musical language at the most advanced stage possible.”3 In addition to dedications to Malcolm X, Che Guevara, and Fidel Castro, whose voice resonates in Y entonces comprendió, Nono seeks to make his work understood and appropriated by a public even further sociologically removed from musical institutions, engaged in an imposed dialogue. In Al gran sole carico d’amore, where agitation and propaganda culminate in Meyerhold’s fascination in replaying in several settings the events of the Soviet Revolution and the Paris Commune in the first half, and the Russian strikes of 1905 in the second (reflecting the crisis of the 1970s, as captured by filmmaker Chris Marker in Le fond de l’air est rouge)–between an exaltation in the struggle and the knowledge that unfinished revolutions often lead to authoritarianism. Nono integrates the questioning of the fall, through characters whose presence is limited to the tribunal’s reading of their respective condemnations. Al gran sole finishes with its material in rags, taken from L’Internationale, the dialectic of proletarian passion opening a deep crisis in rational models, later expressed by philosophers Massimo Cacciari and Aldo Gargani.
With Fragment-Stille, An Diotima, after Hölderlin, and above all Prometeo, premiered in the church of San Lorenzo in Venice in 1984 (but conceived as far back as 1975), Nono developed a radical critique of the oversimplification of musical essence into the simple act of seeing. Prometeo, an extended synthesis of myths and sounds requiring no costumes, sets, or characters and no implicit staging–the fundamentals of a new dramaturgy, a “listening tragedy.” In the 18th century, though political rationalism developed the techniques and powers destined to direct individuals in a continuous manner, the construction of opera houses alienated music’s dionysiac spirit in the social rite, in accordance with the objectives of the government and the state in its infancy. There raged a strong preference for frontality, so that an audience member should be able to see the singers, and above all the conductor, the ultimate demigod. According to Nono, architecture and sociology confirm this tendency to translate sound into images, through the “horseshoe” layout of lyric theater. The space, organized to divert audibility, demonstrates our civilization’s imposed dominance of vision. “The unification of musical and spatial listening is the result of the one-way and one-dimensional use of geometry, aggravated in this particular case by the possibilities of reverberation. By concentrating musical experience in theaters and concert halls, what is irreparably lost is the unique spatial identity to places where a a continual upheaval of innumerable geometries intermingle. Imagine the Basilica San Marco or Notre Dame.”4 Simultaneously, and analogically, a return to classification of modes according to the Platonic ideal of éthoi, led in the writings and works of Rameau to categories such as triumphant, furious, or plaintive… Relegating sounds to categories, or to single means of listening, and the unification of the concert hall express an underlying rationalization of acoustic and architectural space. Marvelously oblivious, musicians wore down, their musical determination consuming their listening skills, subduing them to an image–an integral intermediary or prerequisite and a guarantee of the truth of auditory perception, in the framework of an ideological, literary, or even religious discourse. The listener has the “vision.” In Prometeo, Das atmende Klarsein, or Io, frammento dal Prometeo, based on Giuseppe Verdi’s scala enigmatica in the Ave Maria of Quattro pezzi sacri (before Nono reduced the pitches to two notes in A Carlo Scarpa, architetto, ai suoi infiniti possibili, or the aura of a single note, as in “No hay caminos, hay que caminar…” Andrei Tarkowskij) listening is the central issue; a type of knowledge is at stake: “Knowing how to listen,” writes Nono, “even to silence,” even “to what we cannot hear.” This silence is a bond. The musician gives it to be heard, because listening requires a deeper silence in order to collect the sound, unique, fragile, and irreplaceable, so as not to confuse it with another. There, barely audible sounds, nearly abandoned, are united only by their common root in the world of silence, imbued with the responsibility of an introduction to nothingness. Through this type of listening between musicians, space, following the teachings of Gabrieli and Spanish polyphonists, through the transformative and infinite worlds of Giordano Bruno (Nono’s inspiration for Caminantes…Ayacucho), the listener concentrates on a listening phenomenon based on real and reduced perception. What is then brought to our attention is the act of listening itself in its essence, before it connects with emotion and memory. In Nono’s work, extreme dynamic levels (as low as ppppppp), a silence that resists idle chatter, confuse the distinction between timbres (as in Omaggio a György Kurtag) and as our understanding grows, incite us to lend an ear, to engage in “écoute ententive.” Without this attention and focus, there is no co-existence, no genuine sense of belonging to the Other.
Translation: Christopher Trapani.
- Luigi NONO, unpublished notes on Moïse et Aron, Archivio Luigi Nono.
- Helmut LACHENMANN, « Luigi Nono oder Rückblick auf die serielle Musik » (1969), in Musik als existentielle Erfahrung, Wiesbaden, Breitkopf & Härtel, 1996, p. 250.
- Luigi NONO, « La musica è uno strumento di lotta » (1975), in Scritti e colloqui, vol. I, Lucques, LIM / Ricordi, 2001, p. 217.
- Luigi NONO, « Conversation avec Michele Bertaggia et Massimo Cacciari » (1984), in Écrits, Paris, Christian Bourgois, 1993, p. 490.
© Ircam-Centre Pompidou, 2007
- Solo (excluding voice)
- elec ...sofferte onde serene... for piano and magnetic tape (1976), 14 mn, Ricordi [program note]
- elec Das atmende Klarsein, Fragmente for bass flute, magnetic tape, and electronics ad libitum (1981-1983), 43 mn, Ricordi
- elec Post-Prae-ludium per Donau for tuba and live electronics (1987), 13 mn, Ricordi [program note]
- elec La lontananza nostalgica utopica futura Madrigale a più "Caminantes" con Gidon Kremer , for solo violin and eight magnetic tapes (1988), variable, Ricordi [program note]
- elec Post-Prae-Ludium BAAB-ARR for piccolo and live electronics (1988), 15 mn, partition retirée du catalogue
- Chamber music
- elec Con Luigi Dallapiccola for six percussions and live electronics (1979), 18 mn, Ricordi
- Fragmente-Stille, an Diotima for string quartet (1979-1980), 40 mn, Ricordi [program note]
- elec A Pierre. Dell'azzurro silenzio, inquietum for bass flute, contrabass clarinet and electronics (1985), 10 mn, Ricordi
- "Hay que caminar"Orchester des WDR Köln , soñando for two violins (1989), 28 mn, Ricordi [program note]
- Instrumental ensemble music
- Variazioni canoniche sulla serie dell'op. 41 di Arnold Schoenberg for orchestra (1950), 21 mn, Ricordi
- Composizione per orchestra (1951), 14 mn, Ars Viva
- Polifonica-Monodica-Ritmica for six instruments and percussion (1950-1951), 18 mn, Schott
- Due Espressioni for orchestra (1953), 12 mn, Ars Viva
- Der Rote Mantel concert suite for orchestra (1954), 18 mn, Ars Viva
- Canti per 13 (1955), 11 mn, Ars Viva
- Incontri for twenty-four instruments (1955), 7 mn, Ars Viva [program note]
- Piccola gala notturna veneziana in onore dei 60 anni di Heinrich Strobel for fourteen instruments (1958), Inédit
- Composizione per orchestra n° 2 Diaro Polacco '58 (1959-1965), 14 mn, Ars Viva
- elec Per Bastiana - Tai-Yang Cheng for magnetic tape and three instrument groups (1967), 15 mn, Ricordi
- A Carlo Scarpa architetto, ai suoi infiniti possibili for microinterval orchestra (1984-1985), 8 mn, Ricordi
- elec No hay caminos, hay que caminar... Andrei Tarkovski for seven choirs [orchestral groups] (1987), 25 mn, Ricordi [program note]
- Concert music
- Vocal music and instrument(s)
- Ai Dioscuri for choir and instruments (1948-1949), 4 mn, Rai Trade
- Due liriche greche for choir and instruments (1948-1949), 8 mn, Rai Trade
- La stella mattutina for choir and instruments (1948-1949), Rai Trade
- Julius Fucik for two reciters and orchestra (first part, unfinished) (1951), 10 mn, Rai Trade
- España en el corazon three studies for soprano, baritone, spoken choir and instruments (1951-1952), 12 mn, Ars Viva
- Momento. Romance de la guardia civil española for narrator, spoken choir and orchestra (1952-1953), 18 mn, Ars Viva
- stage Der Rote Mantel ballet in three tableaux by Tatiana Gsovski after Don Perlimplin by Federico García Lorca, for soprano, baritone, choir and orchestra (1954), 35 mn, Ars Viva
- La Victoire de Guernica songs after Paul Eluard for mixed choir and orchestra (1954), 13 mn, Ars Viva
- Liebeslied for mixed choir and instruments (1954), 5 mn, Ars Viva [program note]
- stage Musiche di scena per "Come vi piace" di William Shakespeare for baritone and five instruments (1954), 30 mn, Rai Trade
- Il Canto Sospeso for soprano, alto, tenor, mixed choir and orchestra (1956), 28 mn, Ars Viva
- La Terra e la compagna songs after Cesare Pavese for soprano, tenor, mixed choir and instruments (1957), 8 mn, Ars Viva
- Cori di Didone for mixed choir and percussion (1958), 12 mn, Ars Viva
- Canti di vita e d'amore sul Ponte di Hiroshima, for soprano, tenor and orchestra (1962), 18 mn, Ars Viva
- Canciones a Guiomar for solo soprano, six-part female choir and instruments (1962-1963), 10 mn, Ars Viva
- elec A floresta é jovem e cheja de vida for three narrators, soprano, clarinet, brass plate and magnetic tape (1966), 40 mn, Ricordi
- Intolleranza 1960 (suite da concerto) for soprano, choir and orchestra (1969), 18 mn, Ars Viva
- elec stage Intolleranza 1960 action in two tableaux based on an idea by Angelo Maria Ripellino (1960-1970), 1 h 20 mn, Ars Viva
- Voci destroying muros for female voice and orchestra (1970), 17 mn, partition retirée du catalogue
- elec Como una ola de fuerza y luz for soprano, piano, orchestra and tape (1971), 30 mn, Ricordi
- Ein Gespenst geht um in der Welt for solo soprano, choir and orchestra (1971), 28 mn, Ricordi
- elec stage Al gran sole carico d'amore two-part stage action for soloists, small choir, large choir, orchestra and tape (1974, 1977), 1 h 35 mn, Ricordi
- elec Al gran sole carico d'amore (frammenti) for soloists, choir, orchestra and tape (1976, 1978), 55 mn, Ricordi
- elec Das atmende Klarsein for bass flute, small choir and live electronics (1980-1981), 45 mn, Ricordi [program note]
- elec Io, frammento dal Prometeo for three sopranos, small choir, bass flute, double bass clarinet and electronics (1981), 1 h 10 mn, Ricordi
- elec Quando stanno morendo. Diaro polacco n. 2 for four female voices, flute, cello and electronics (1982), 35 mn, Ricordi [program note]
- elec Guai ai gelidi mostri for two contraltos, six instrumentalists and magnetic tape (1983), 43 mn, Ricordi [program note]
- elec Omaggio a György Kurtág for contralto, flute, clarinet, tuba and live electronics (1983, 1986), 18 mn, Ricordi
- elec stage Prometeo tragedia dell'ascolto , for vocal and instrumental soloists, choir, orchestra and live electronics (1981-1984, 1985), 2 h 15 mn, Ricordi
- elec Risonanze erranti. Liederzyklus a Massimo Cacciari for mezzo-soprano, bass flute, tuba, percussion and electronics (1986, 1987), 40 mn, Ricordi
- elec Caminantes... Ayacucho for contralto, bass flute, organ, two choirs, three-group orchestra and electronics (1986-1987), 42 mn, Ricordi [program note]
- elec Découvrir la subversion Hommage à Edmond Jabès, for contralto, bass, narrator, flute, tuba, horn and live electronics (1987), 30 mn, partition retirée du catalogue
- A cappella vocal music
- Ha Venido canciones para Silvia, for solo soprano and choir of six sopranos (1960), 6 mn, Ars Viva
- Sarà Dolce Tacere song for eight solo voices (1960), 10 mn, Ars Viva [program note]
- Djamila Boupacha for solo soprano (1962), 10 mn, Schott [program note]
- Da un diario italiano for two choirs (1964), 8 mn, Schott
- elec La Fabbrica illuminata for soprano and magnetic tape (1964), 17 mn, Ricordi [program note]
- elec Musica-Manifesto n. 1: Un volto e del mare for two female voices and magnetic tape (1969), 17 mn, Ricordi
- elec Y entonces comprendió for magnetic tape, six female voices and choir (1969-1970), 32 mn, Ricordi
- Siamo la gioventù del Vietnam for one-voice choir (1973), Inédit
- ¿Dónde estás hermano? for four female voices (1982), 8 mn, Ricordi [program note]
- Electronic music / fixed media / mechanical musical instruments
- elec Omaggio a Emilio Vedova for magnetic tape (1960), 5 mn, Ricordi
- elec stage Musik zu "Die Ermittlung" von Peter Weiss for magnetic tape (1965), 15 mn, Ricordi
- elec Ricorda cosa ti hanno fatto in Auschwitz for magnetic tape (1966), 11 mn, Ricordi
- elec Contrappunto dialettico alla mente for magnetic tape (1967), 20 mn, Ricordi
- elec Musica per Manzù music from the film Pace e guerra , for magnetic tape (1969), 20 mn, Ricordi
- elec Musica-Manifesto n. 2: Non consumiamo Marx for magnetic tape (1969), 18 mn, Ricordi
- elec Für Paul Dessau for magnetic tape (1974), 7 mn, Ricordi
- Unspecified instrumentation
- Epitaffio a Federico Garcia Lorca (1951-1953), pas d'éditeur
- elec Caminantes... Ayacucho for contralto, bass flute, organ, two choirs, three-group orchestra and electronics, 42 mn, Ricordi [program note]
- elec Découvrir la subversion Hommage à Edmond Jabès, for contralto, bass, narrator, flute, tuba, horn and live electronics, 30 mn, partition retirée du catalogue
- elec No hay caminos, hay que caminar... Andrei Tarkovski for seven choirs [orchestral groups], 25 mn, Ricordi [program note]
- elec Post-Prae-ludium per Donau for tuba and live electronics, 13 mn, Ricordi [program note]
- elec Risonanze erranti. Liederzyklus a Massimo Cacciari for mezzo-soprano, bass flute, tuba, percussion and electronics, 40 mn, Ricordi
- A Carlo Scarpa architetto, ai suoi infiniti possibili for microinterval orchestra, 8 mn, Ricordi
- elec A Pierre. Dell'azzurro silenzio, inquietum for bass flute, contrabass clarinet and electronics, 10 mn, Ricordi
- elec stage Prometeo tragedia dell'ascolto , for vocal and instrumental soloists, choir, orchestra and live electronics, 2 h 15 mn, Ricordi
- elec Das atmende Klarsein, Fragmente for bass flute, magnetic tape, and electronics ad libitum, 43 mn, Ricordi
- elec Guai ai gelidi mostri for two contraltos, six instrumentalists and magnetic tape, 43 mn, Ricordi [program note]
- elec Omaggio a György Kurtág for contralto, flute, clarinet, tuba and live electronics, 18 mn, Ricordi
- elec Con Luigi Dallapiccola for six percussions and live electronics, 18 mn, Ricordi
- Siamo la gioventù del Vietnam for one-voice choir, Inédit
- Intolleranza 1960 (suite da concerto) for soprano, choir and orchestra, 18 mn, Ars Viva
- elec Musica per Manzù music from the film Pace e guerra , for magnetic tape, 20 mn, Ricordi
- elec Musica-Manifesto n. 1: Un volto e del mare for two female voices and magnetic tape, 17 mn, Ricordi
- elec Musica-Manifesto n. 2: Non consumiamo Marx for magnetic tape, 18 mn, Ricordi
- Canciones a Guiomar for solo soprano, six-part female choir and instruments, 10 mn, Ars Viva
- Cori di Didone for mixed choir and percussion, 12 mn, Ars Viva
- Piccola gala notturna veneziana in onore dei 60 anni di Heinrich Strobel for fourteen instruments, Inédit
- Il Canto Sospeso for soprano, alto, tenor, mixed choir and orchestra, 28 mn, Ars Viva
- Der Rote Mantel concert suite for orchestra, 18 mn, Ars Viva
- stage Der Rote Mantel ballet in three tableaux by Tatiana Gsovski after Don Perlimplin by Federico García Lorca, for soprano, baritone, choir and orchestra, 35 mn, Ars Viva
- La Victoire de Guernica songs after Paul Eluard for mixed choir and orchestra, 13 mn, Ars Viva
- Liebeslied for mixed choir and instruments, 5 mn, Ars Viva [program note]
- stage Musiche di scena per "Come vi piace" di William Shakespeare for baritone and five instruments, 30 mn, Rai Trade
- España en el corazon three studies for soprano, baritone, spoken choir and instruments, 12 mn, Ars Viva
- Variazioni canoniche sulla serie dell'op. 41 di Arnold Schoenberg for orchestra, 21 mn, Ricordi
- Presenza storica di Luigi Nono (Angela Ida De Benedictis, éd., avec la collaboration de Laura Zattra), Lucca, LIM, 2011.
- Musik-Konzepte, Luigi Nono, volume 20, 1981.
- Studien zur Wertungsforschung. Die Musik Luigi Nonos, volume 24, 1991.
- Philippe ALBÈRA (sous la dir. de), Luigi Nono, Paris / Genève, Festival d’automne à Paris / Contrechamps, 1987.
- Gianmario BORIO, Giovanni MORELLI et Veniero RIZZARDI (sous la dir. de), La nuova ricerca sull’opera di Luigi Nono, Florence, Olschki, 1999.
- Massimo CACCIARI (sous la dir. de), Verso Prometeo, Milan, Ricordi, 1984.
- Martine CADIEU, Présence de Luigi Nono, Isles-lès-Villenoy, Pro Musica, 1995.
- Stefan DREES, Architektur und Fragment. Studien zu späten Kompositionen Luigi Nonos, Sarrebruck, Pfau, 1998.
- Laurent FENEYROU, « Il canto sospeso » de Luigi Nono, Paris, Michel de Maule, 2002.
- Lydia JESCHKE, Prometeo. Geschichtskonzeptionen in Luigi Nonos Hörtragödie, Stuttgart, Franz Steiner Verlag, 1997.
- Helmut LACHENMANN, Musik als existentielle Erfahrung. Schriften 1966-1995, Wiesbaden, Breitkopf & Härtel, 1996.
- Jimmie LEBLANC, Luigi Nono et les chemins de l’écoute : entre espace qui sonne et espace du son. Une analyse de No hay caminos Hay que caminar… Tarkovskij (1987), L’Harmattan, 2010.
- Giovanni MORELLI, Scenari della lontananza. La musica del Novecento fuori di sé, Venise, Marsilio, 2003.
- Christine MAST, Luigi Nono “Io, Prometeo”. Zum Entwurf konkreter Subjektivität in Luigi Nonos “Tragedia dell’ascolto” Prometeo”, Francfort, Stroemfeld, 2008.
- Massimo MILA et Luigi NONO, Nulla di oscuro tra noi. Lettere 1952-1988 (Angela Ida De Benedictis et Veniero Rizzardi, éds.), Milan, Il Saggiatore, 2010.
- Wolfgang MOTZ, Konstruktion und Ausdruck. Analytische Betrachtungen zu « Il canto sospeso » (1955/56) von Luigi Nono, Sarrebruck, Pfau, 1996.
- Carola NIELINGER-VAKIL, Luigi Nono: a composer in context, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 2015.
- Luigi NONO, Per un sospeso fuoco *:*lettere 1950-1969 (Paolo Da Molin et Maria Carla Papini éd.), Milan, Il Saggiatore, 2016.
- Luigi NONO, Studi, edizione, testimonianze (Luca Cossettini, éd.), Lucca, LIM, 2010.
- Luigi NONO, Carteggi concernenti politica, cultura e Partito Comunista Italiano (Antonio Trudu, éd.), Florence, Olschki, 2008.
- Luigi NONO, Écrits (Laurent Feneyrou, éd.), Genève, Contrechamps, 2007.
- Luigi NONO, Scritti e colloqui (Angela Ida De Benedictis et Veniero Rizzardi, sous la dir. de), Lucques, LIM / Ricordi, 2001.
- Luigi PESTALOZZA (sous la dir. de), Al gran sole carico d’amore. Per un nuovo teatro musicale, Milan, Ricordi, 1974.
- Enzo RESTAGNO, (sous la dir. de), Nono, Turin, EDT, 1987.
- Erika SCHALLER, Klang und Zahl. Luigi Nono, serielles Komponieren zwischen 1955 und 1959, Sarrebruck, Pfau, 1997.
- Friedrich SPANGEMACHER, Luigi Nono, die elektronische Musik, Regensburg, Gustav Bosse Verlag, 1983.
- Juerg STENZL, Luigi Nono, Hambourg, Rowohlt Verlag, 1998.
- Juerg STENZL (sous la dir. de), Luigi Nono. Texte, Studien zu seiner Musik, Zurich, Atlantis Musikbuch Verlag, 1975.
- Laura ZATTRA, Ian BURLEIGH, Friedemann SALLIS, « Studying Luigi Nono’s A Pierre. Dell’azzurro silenzio, inquietum (1985) as a Performance Event », Contemporary Music Review, vol. 30, n° 5, 2012.
- Luigi NONO, Risonanze Erranti. Liederzyklus A Massimo Cacciari, Marco Angiu, Friedrich Goldmann, direction ; Ensemble Prometeo, dans « Risonanze Erranti – Edizione Delle Opere Vol.1 », 1 cd Schiiin, 2018, ELN1.
- Luigi NONO, A Carlo Scarpa, Architetto, Ai Suoi Infiniti Possibili ; A Pierre. Dell’azzurro silenzio, inquietum ; Guai Ai Gelidi Mostri ; La Terra e la Compagna ; Caminantes… Ayacucho ; No Hay Que Caminar… Andrej Tarkowskij, dans « Seguente », 2 cd Édition RZ, 2014, ed. RZ 1031-32.
- Luigi NONO, A Pierre. Dell’azzurro silenzio, inquietum ; …sofferte onde serene… ; Omaggio a György Kurtag ; Con Luigi Dallapiccola, Roberto Fabbriciani : flûte, Ernesto Molinari : clarinette, Markus Hinterhäuser : piano, Susanne Otto : contralto, Les Percussions de Strasbourg, Ensemble Experimental, direction : Detlef Heusinger, Experimentalstudio des SWR, 1 cd Neos, 2012, NEOS 11122.
- Luigi NONO, Risonanze errant ; Post-prae-ludium per Donau, Susanne Otto : contralto, Roberto Fabbriciani : flûte, Klaus Burger : tuba, Les Percussions de Strasbourg, direction : Detlef Heusinger, Experimentalstudio des SWR, 1 cd Neos, 2011, NEOS 11119.
- Luigi NONO, Guai ai gelidi mostri ; Quando stanno morendo. Diario polacco n. 2, solistes, Experimentalstudio des SWR, André Richard : direction artistique, 1 cd Neos, 2008, NEOS 10801/02.
- Luigi NONO, Caminantes… Ayacucho, comprenant aussi No hay caminos, hay que caminar…, Andrej Tarkowskij, “Hay que caminar” sognando, Irvine Arditti, violon, Roberto Fabbriciani, flûte, Graeme Jennings, violon, Susanne Otto, mezzo-soprano, Experimentalstudio für akustische Kunst e.V., Solistenchor Freiburg, WDR Rundfunkchor Köln, WDR Sinfonieorchester Köln, Emilio Pomárico, 1 cd Kairos, 2007, 0012512KAI.
- Luigi NONO, Complete Works for Solo Tape, 2 cds Stradivarius / Ricordi, 2006, STR 57001.
- Luigi NONO, Io, frammento da Prometeo, Das atmende Klarsein, Solistenchor Freiburg (I-II), Roberto Fabbriciani, flûte (II), Experimentalstudio der Heinrich-Strobel Stiftung (I-II), direction : André Richard (I-II), 1 cd col legno, 2003, WWE 2SACD 20600.
- Luigi NONO, « Quando stanno morendo » : “Ha venido”, Canciones para Silvia ; ¿Dónde estás, hermano? ; Djamila Boupachà ; Sarà dolce tacere ; Quando stanno morendo. Diario polacco n. 2, Neue Vocalsolisten Stuttgart, 1 cd col legno, 2002, WWE 1SACD 20603.
- Luigi NONO, Al gran sole carico d’amore, Staatsopernchor Stuttgart, Staatsorchester Stuttgart, direction : Lothar Zagrosek, 2 cds Teldec, 2001, n° 8573-81059-2.
- Luigi NONO, Prometeo, Solistenchor Freiburg, Ensemble Modern, direction : Ingo Metzmacher et Peter Rundel, 2 cds EMI Classics - Ricordi, 1995, n° 5 55209-2.
- Luigi NONO, Intolleranza 1960, Chor der Staatsoper Stuttgart, Staatsorchester Stuttgart, direction : Bernhard Kontarsky, 1 cd Teldec, 1995, n° 4509-97304-2.
- Luigi NONO, Il canto sospeso, Rundfunkchor Berlin, Berliner Philharmoniker, direction : Claudio Abbado, 1 cd Sony, 1993, SK 53360.
- Luigi NONO, La fabbrica illuminata, « Ha venido ». Canciones para Silvia;Ricorda cosa ti hanno fatto in Auschwitz, Carla Henius, soprano (I), Schola Cantorum Stuttgart (II), Clytus Gottwald, dir. (II), 1 cd Wergo, 1992, WER 6038-2.
- Luigi NONO, I. Como una ola de fuerza y luz; II. …sofferte onde serene…; III.Contrappunto dialettico alla mente, Slavka Taskova : soprano (I), Maurizio Pollini : piano (I-II), Symphonie-Orchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, direction : Claudio Abbado (I), Liliana Poli : soprano (III), Coro de camera della Rai, Roma, direction : Nino Antonellini (III), 1 cd Deutsche Grammophon, 1988, n° 423 248-2.
- Luigi NONO, Fragmente-Stille; an Diotima, LaSalle Quartet, 1 cd Deutsche Grammophon, 1986, n° 415 513-2.
- Archives Luigi Nono, http://www.luiginono.it (vérifié en février 2019).