Artistic direction

Daniel Ott and Manos Tsangaris

Daniel Ott

Born in 1960 in Grub, in the Appenzell region of Switzerland.

Composer, pianist, theatermaker, author of landscape-based works.

Studied piano, established independent theater groups, and a street theater group with a stage on a wagon drawn by horses. Studied theater in Paris and London, and composition under Nicolaus A. Huber and Klaus Huber.

In particular, and this since 25 years: works as a composer, pianist, innovator in the field of new music theater, interdisciplinary and situation-related. Founded the festival »neue musik rümlingen«. Lectureship in experimental music for ten years in Berlin.

Music theater productions for, among others, Staatsoper Stuttgart; Theater Bielefeld, Donaueschinger Musiktage; and Wittener Tage für neue Kammermusik. Situation-based works for Expo Hannover (music in the Swiss pavilion by Peter Zumthor); MMK Museum für Moderne Kunst Frankfurt/Main; the Alpentöne festival in Altdorf, Switzerland; and Wasserturm Prenzlauer Berg in Berlin.

Landscape compositions for the harbor on the island of Rügen, the pilgrimage site Heilikreuz in Entlebuech, Switzerland; the Neisse River between Görlitz and Zgorzelec; the Rhine Harbor in Basel; the Elbe River near Hitzacker, and the Ruhr near Witten.

He has been a professor of composition and experimental music theater at the Berlin University of Arts since 2005, and a member of the Berlin Academy of Arts since 2015.

As of 2016 co-artistic director with Manos Tsangaris of the Munich Biennale – Festival of New Music Theater.

Manos Tsangaris

Born in 1956 in Düsseldorf, Germany.

Composer, drummer, installation artist, protagonist of new music theater.

Studied under Mauricio Kagel (composition) and Christoph Caskel (percussion) at the Hochschule für Musik und Tanz Köln (HfMT). Studied under Alfonso Hüppi at the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf.

Fundamentally: Research on an expanded composition term that radically places the person in the center. Examinations of the interfaces between images, sound, word, and scene – and their syntheses in a universally comprehended new music theater.

Regular performances of his works at renowned international festivals (Donaueschinger Musiktage; Wittener Tage für neue Kammermusik; Belgrade International Theatre Festival (BITEF); MusikBiennale Berlin; Venice Biennale; Ultima festival in Oslo; Tonlagen Dresden; Warsaw Autumn (Warszawska Jesień). For 25 years his installative and visual works have been shown in important galleries and museums across the globe.

Initiator of the congress Praemoderne in Cologne. Recipient of the Bernd Alois Zimmermann scholarship of the City of Cologne; the scholarship of Akademie Schloss Solitude Stuttgart; the art award of the Berlin Academy of Arts; and an honorary guest at Villa Massimo. Instructor of trans-disciplinary composing, director of the academy project European Center for the Arts Dresden.

Lecturer at the Darmstädter Ferienkurse; professor of composition at the Hochschule für Musik Carl Maria von Weber Dresden since 2009; a member of the Berlin Academy of Arts (director of the music department since 2013); and a member of the Saxon Academy of Arts since 2010.

As of 2016 co-artistic director with Daniel Ott of the Munich Biennale – Festival of New Music Theater.


Marion Hirte and Malte Ubenauf


Cathy Milliken

Catherine Milliken completed her music degree in Australia, majoring in performance (piano and oboe). She then continued her oboe studies in Europe under Heinz Holliger and Maurice Bourgue. As a founding member of the renowned group for contemporary music, Ensemble Modern Germany until 2006, she worked with leading composers and conductors of this century including Heiner Goebbels, Peter Eötvös, Elena Kats, Frank Zappa, György Ligeti and Karlheinz Stockhausen (who produced her performance of »Spiral« on CD -Stockhausen Verlag 45).

Her compositional career began in 1990. She has since then, composed for theatre, opera, radio, film and created installations and has been commissioned by the South Bank Centre London , the Berliner Saatsoper, Staatstheatre in Darmstadt, the ZKM (Centre for New Media) Karlsruhe, the CCMIX(enakis) Centre in Paris, as well as Concerto Köln, Ensemble Resonanz, Iceland Symphony Orchestra and other international contemporary music festivals such as Tectonics Festival.

In 1994 she formed the HCD-Productions with composer colleagues Dietmar Wiesner and Hermann Kretzschmar. Together they conceived installations, performances, produced CD’s and composed radio plays for which they received such prizes as the “Prix Italia”.

She has also received the Prix Marulic, and in 2015 the prestigious Prix Italia for a second time together with Dietmar Wiesner for the radio play »Bunyah«. As well, the collaborative opera »Comfort Ye« received  the european YAMA award last year for »Best opera for young audiences«. Her recent orchestral work »Earth Plays« for the Musica Viva series of the Bayrischer Rundfunk Orchestra and mezzo Soprano premiered in December 2015, receiving critical acclaim.

She still regularly performs and improvises with voice, oboe and electronics in various chamber- formations including with peformers such as Angie Milliken, Kate Strong and David Moss, as well as with members of Ensemble Modern and Ensemble Extrakte. Her next upcoming appearance will be in New York at the armory in Louise Andriessens' opera »De Materie«.

She was director of the Education Program of the Berliner Philharmoniker from 2005-2012 and is internationally recognised as a leading creative director and composer. Most recent creative projects have led her to artistic collaborations in South Africa, Japan and Israel.  Positions held now include being part of creative team for the Munich Biennale for Music Theatre 2016. She lives in Berlin as a free lance composer, performer and creative director and is presently doing a doctorate on composition and collaboration.

Isabel Mundry

Robyn Schulkowsky

Born and raised in South Dakota, Robyn Schulkowsky has been an innovator and collaborator throughout her life. Already during her studies in Iowa and Germany, and later on international solo tours, Schulkowsky has dedicated herself to revealing the wonders of percussion to people around the world. Her continuous exploration of new sound dimensions has led to the development of new and unusual musical instruments.

An active musician on five continents, Robyn moved to Germany during a heyday of experimental and adventurous classical composition. She has premiered and recorded some of the most important percussion works of the 20th and 21st centuries, working with composers such as Karlheinz Stockhausen. John Cage, Iannis Xenakis, and Morton Feldman, presenting their works during tours to West Africa, India, Asia, South America and Mexico, the USA, as well as at major European Music Festivals.

Robyn Schulkowsky's adventurous nature connects her with exceptional project partners, and, also with alternative performance spaces. She has collaborated with legendary African drummer Kofi Ghanaba, visual artist Guenther Uecker, actress Edith Clever, social scientist Nilam Ram, and choreographers Merce Cunningham and Sasha Waltz.

Since 1998, as founder of RhythmLab, she has taken drumming workshops to countless cities, involving students, professionals and aficionados alike in rhythm workshops and concerts of original percussion music. Originally conceived for children and teenagers, often conducted specifically for adults, the experience focuses on the immediacy of sonic discovery and the tactile intensity in music. in rhythm, sound and movement. Last year, based on sketches by the American composer Charles Ives.  she directed an interpretation of "Life Pulse Prelude" with over 80 percussionists in Bonn and Berlin, Germany.

Schulkowsky's virtuosity has been captured on over 20 recordings, including cds with violist Kim Kashkashian and trumpet players Nils Petter Molvaer and Reinhold Friedrich, and seminal recordings of compositions by Morton Feldman and Christian Wolff, with whom she has collaborated for over 20 years.

In 2005 she collaborated with the sound aritist Lukas Kuehne and the drummet Joey Baron for Space and Frequency-RhythmLab, a Live Sonic Sculpture in New York's Grand Central Station. Her opera, »Child of the Sea Otter« was Premiered in Oldenburg, Germany in 2008 and repeated in Berlin and Mannheim. Her percussion trio composition, »Armadillo«,  was released last year on New World Records.

Penelope Wehrli

Dietmar Wiesner

As a co-founder of and flutist in Ensemble Modern he has been actively involved since the beginning in all of the artistic and organizational processes of the ensemble, and he works with the most important composers of his time. He performs regularly in Germany and abroad, and also as a soloist with orchestras such as, among others, the SWR Sinfonieorchester Baden-Baden and Freiburg. He has worked as a composer for installations and music theater productions at, among other institutions, Comédie Française Paris; Deutsches Schauspielhaus Hamburg; and Schauspiel Frankfurt. In 1994 he founded with Hermann Kretzschmar and Catherine Milliken the composer formation HCD Productions. He has been a lecturer at the International Ensemble Modern Academy (IEMA) and the Frankfurter Musikhochschule (HfMDK) since 2005. He has been the director of the educational projects »lautstark« of the music festival Klangspuren Schwaz and ›Zukunft@Bphil‹ of the Berliner Philharmoniker since 2007.

Production and Management

Tilmann Broszat

Artistic Office

Katrin Beck

Festival Office

Karl Beckers, Maria Mosca, Franziska Alfons


Walter Delazer, Sarah Myriam Wolf, Annette Geller (project management GAACH)

Technical Direction

Werner Kraft

Spielmotor Munich Association Administration

Viktoria Strohbach-Hanko

Media and Public Relations

Kathrin Hauser-Schmolck, Christiane Pfau


Müller+Hess, Basel
Catherine Hersberger, Munich

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