The composer Henryk Górecki has died at the age of 76 after suffering a long illness. Born in Silesia, south-west Poland, in 1933, Górecki studied violin before composition. He is most famous for his Third Symphony of 1976, also known as the Symphony of Sorrowful Songs, a 1991 recording of which sold over a million copies.

As a composer of chamber music he had a fruitful relationship with the Kronos Quartet, for whom he wrote three quartets – Already it is Dusk (1988), Quasi una fantasia (1991) and ...songs are sung (1995).

Górecki's other notable works for strings include the Sonata for Two Violins of 1957, the folk-inspired Three Pieces in Old Style (1963), and Elementi (1962) for violin, viola and cello, which formed the first section of Genesis, a three-part chamber music cycle.