In 1959 he graduated in Composition with Goffredo Petrassi at the Santa Cecilia Conservatory of Music in Rome. The following year he studied in Paris with Max Deutsch. Back in Italy he attended the post-graduate courses taught by Goffredo Petrassi at the Santa Cecilia Academy of Music.
In 1961 he was awarded the first prize of the International Competition of the SIMC - the first of many other important international recognitions.
In 1971 he earned his Master Degree in Ethnomusicology at the University of California in Los Angeles, followed up with a research in the Himalaya regions on the music of the Tibetan Buddhism.
Member Performer of the Gruppo di Improvvisazione Nuova Consonanza and Musica Elettronica Viva (MEV) together with Frederic Rzewski and Alvin Curran among others.
He succeeded Alain Daniélou as Chair of the International Institute for Comparative Music Studies of Berlin, staying in charge until 1983, taking over the "Scuola Interculturale di Musica" in Venice.
Vice-president of the Italian Society of Ethnomusicology; visiting Professor in Composition at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Furthermore, he has held many conferences and seminars; been a member of several international Juries, including the Kyoto Prize.
Author of the book "La Musique du Bouddhisme Tibétain" (Paris, Buchet/Chastel, 1977); his articles and compositions are edited by BMG Ariola, Edipan, Edizioni Suvini-Zerboni and Ricordi.
Since 1983 he taught Composition at the Conservatories "G. B Martini" of Bologna and "S. Cecilia" of Rome.