French composer/conductor/teacher Paul Sauvanet was born in southern France and originally studied classical European music, but is equally at home with artists as diverse as Oscar Peterson, Keith Jarrett, space music composers Michael Stearns and Steve Roach, and Arvo Pärt. He has also expanded his musical palette to include world music, fusion, and electronic music, both avant-garde and as a digital orchestra.
Educated at the Bordeaux National and the Paris National Superior Music Academies, Sauvanet won first prizes in counterpoint at both. He is trained as a concert pianist and classical percussionist, and fostered a solo piano career in the classical, jazz, and rock genres. In 1981, he created an electronic music studio near Aix-en-Provence, and founded the Ricercar Trio, devoted to the live performance of electronic music. His later works, such as Nomad and Tristesse (Sadness), turn away from the avant-garde and jazz to return to classical structures and instruments performed as digital orchestra. These works are very atmospheric, and the listener would be hard pressed to tell they were not performed by a live orchestra.
Sauvanet's travels through Europe, Africa, Turkey, Southeast Asia, and the United States have broadened his musical palette, as have his studies of meditation, mantras, psychoanalysis, and Hindu and Buddhist philosophies.