Composer Suzanne Giraud studied piano, violin, viola, accompaniment, music theory, analysis and conducting at the Strasbourg conservatory. She then studied at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Paris, obtaining her diplomas in counterpoint, harmony, analysis and orchestration (class of Marius Constant), conducting, as well as analysis and composition (class of Claude Ballif).
Studying electroacoustic music with Jacques Lejeune and Plilippe Mion, she attended computer music courses at the Ircam, spent a year studying instrumental composition and spectral music with Tristan Murail and Hugues Dufourt, and then composed for the french ensemble L’Itinéraire.
Upon meeting with Iannis Xenakis, she composed on the UPIC under his direction, and wrote an article for the Pompidou Centre on Xenakis’ Tetras for string quartet. Discovered by Franco Donatoni during a masterclass, she obtained a scolarship at the Accademia Chigiana of Siena, perfecting her composition and conducting skills with Franco Donatoni and Franco Ferrara.
Appointed resident at the Villa Medici in Rome for two years, Suzanne Giraud befriends Giacinto Scelsi. They remained friends until his death, after which she participated in the Isabella Scelsi Foundation. For ten years she took part in the Darmstadt summer courses, where she met Morton Feldman, Horatiu Radulescu and Brian Ferneyhough.
Her works include commissions by the French state, Radio France, the Ensemble InterContemporain, the Musique Nouvelle en Liberté association ; as well as various festivals, orchestras and ensembles in France (Musica, Musiques de Marseille), Belgium (Ars Musica, Champ d’Action), the United Kingdom (the Almeida Theatre, Cardiff festival), Switzerland (Archipel, the CIP), The Netherlands (Residentie orchestra), and Germany (Dresden festival)…
Recently, two of her operas have been played on various opera stages: Le Vase de Parfums (libretto and stage direction by Olivier Py) and Caravaggio (a libretto co-written with Dominique Fernandez, staring Philippe Jarousky in the title role). She has received honors and distinctions from the UNESCO, the ISCM (Budapest 1986 and Manchester in 1998), as well as the prix Georges Bizet of the Académie des Beaux-Arts and the prix Georges Enesco of the SACEM.