Composer, teacher and musicologist Tiberiu Olah was born on December 26, 1927 in Arpășel (Batăr, Bihor County), into a Hungarian family. Studying at the Cluj Napoca Conservatory (1946-49), he also took composition classes at the Piotr Ilych Tchaikovsky Conservatory in Moscow (1949-54) before being appointed professor at the Bucharest Conservatory (1954-2001). He earned creation grants to study in West Berlin (1966-70) and participated in the Darmstadt Summer Courses (1966-69). In 1978 he earned a PhD for his thesis “Unele probleme în legătură cu timpul și spațiul muzical” [Some Aspects of Musical Time and Space]. His works were performed in New York, Washington, London, Paris, Berlin, Prague, Roma, San Francisco, Cologne, Darmstadt.
From Tiberiu Olah’s compositional oeuvre: Symphony no. 1 (1956); Sonata for clarinet (1963); Gate of the Kiss, tone poem for large orchestra (1965), “Mihai Viteazul” orchestral suite (1971); “Deer Time”, choral symphony for SATB choir and tape (1973); Sonata for flute (1978); Armonii IV, “Omagiu lui Enescu” [Harmonies IV, Homage to Enescu] (1981); Symphony no. 2, “Adventures with Major Triads Pentatonic Scales” (1986); “Obelisc pentru Wolfgang Amadeus” [Obelisk for Wolfgang Amadeus] for saxophone and orchestra (1991).
In addition to writing film music for over twenty Romanian productions between 1959 and 1984, Tiberiu Olah also penned a large number of studies and articles published in Romania, Germany, France.
Tiberiu Olah died in Târgu Mureș in 2002.