Born in Avignon in 1908, Messiaen entered the Conservatoire de Paris at the young age of eleven. He earned five First Prizes: counterpoint and fugue, piano accompaniment, organ and improvisation, music history, and composition. In 1941, Messiaen was named Professor of Harmony at the Conservatoire de Paris and later named Professor of Composition in 1966. In 1969, he received the Calouste Gulbenkian Prize, in 1971 the Erasmus Award and in 1975 the Ernst von Siemens Award. In this same year, Messiaen was also elected as Associate Member of the Royal Academy of Science, Literature and Art of Belgium. He died in Paris in 1992.