Nadir Vassena was born in 1970 in Balerna, Switzerland. He studied composition with Bruno Zanolini and Johannes Schöllhorn in Freiburg im Breisgau. In 1993, he was selected for participation in the composition course at Royaumont (France) given by Brian Ferryhough. Nadir Vassena has been invited to numerous international festivals and has won many prizes for his compositions such as the 1992 WDR/Cologne (West German radio) competition, the 1994 prize awarded by the Institut für Neue Musik of the Hochschule der Künste in Berlin, and the 1997 Mozart Competition in Salzburg. From 1996 to 2000 his compositions were selected every year for performance during Gaudeamus Week in Amsterdam. In 1999, he won the Christoph Deltz Foundation prize and in 2000 he was awarded a bursary by the Akadademie Schloss-Solitude in Stuttgart. In 2002/2003 he was a member of the Swiss Institute in Rome. For several years he has worked with the Association Oggimusica and has been Artistic Director, together with Mats Scheidegger, of the Tage für Neue Musik in Zürich since 2004. From 2001 to 2005 he was on the board of the Association of Swiss Musicians. Nadir Vassena teaches composition and analysis at the Conservatorio della Svizzera italiana, where he is also a member of the Direction of the school.