Olivier Eugène Prosper Charles Messiaen (UKˈmɛsiæ̃, USmɛˈsjæ̃,_meɪˈsjæ̃,_mɛˈsjɑ̃; ɔlivje øʒɛn pʁɔspɛʁ ʃaʁl mɛsjɑ̃; 10 December 1908 – 27 April 1992) was a French composer, organist, and ornithologist who was one of the major composers of the 20th century. His music is rhythmically complex; harmonically and melodically he employs a system he called modes of limited transposition, which he abstracted from the systems of material his early compositions and improvisations generated. He wrote music for chamber ensembles and orchestra, voice, solo organ, and piano, and experimented with the use of novel electronic instruments developed in Europe during his lifetime.
Messiaen entered the Paris Conservatoire at age 11 and studied with Paul Dukas, Maurice Emmanuel, Charles-Marie Widor and Marcel Dupré, among others. He was appointed organist at the Église de la Sainte-Trinité, Paris, in 1931, a post he held for 61 years, until his death. He taught at the Schola Cantorum de Paris during the 193