Germán Toro Pérez Head of ICST

Photo by Ellen Mathys

Born 1964 in Bogotá, Colombia. Composition studies with Luis Torres Zuleta and piano with Sergio Mesa in Bogotá (1983-85), Minor in Music Theorie at the Universidad de los Andes in Bogotá (1982-85, Diploma). Composition studies by Erich Urbanner and Karl-Heinz Füssl at the University of Music and Performing Arts, Vienna (1986-1992), conducting courses with Karl Österreicher, Dominique Rouits and Peter Eötvös (1992-1994). Studies on Electroacoustics and Computer Music at the University of Music and Performing Arts, Vienna (1994-1996), Master studies on Music (1996-1997), Computer Music Courses at IRCAM in Paris (1999).


His catalogue (about 50 works) includes instrumental, electroacoustic and mixed compositions, as well as works in collaboration with graphic design, painting and experimental video. Some of his compositions make reference to artists like Mark Rothko, Adolf Wölfli, Michelangelo Buonarotti, Fernando Pessoa, Jorge Luis Borges, Italo Calvino, Juan Rulfo and José María Arguedas. A central theme in his work has been the relationship between artistic language (literature, painting, music) and the construction of reality.


He has received composition grants from the Colombian Ministry of Culture, the Austrian Republic and the Experimental Studio Freiburg as well as composition prizes in Bogotá, Bourges, Austria (Erste Bank 2001), Low Austria et al. His works have been performed in Europe, Asia, North- und South America at festivals like Wien Modern, Klangspuren Schwaz, Synthèse Bourges, Sonorities Belfast, Borealis Norway, Humor y Aliento, Mexico, New Media Art, Daegu und WNMD Stuttgart, Steirischer Herbst, Graz, Frühjahrstage der Neuen Musik, Weimar in collaboration with Ensembles like die Reihe Vienna, On-Line Vienna, Mondrian Basel, New Century Players L.A., Mosaik Berlin und Klangforum Vienna among others. Ensembles, Festivals and Cultural Institutions have commissioned most of his works. He is co-founder of the NewTonEnsemble, Vienna.


From 1999 to 2006 he was director of the Computer Music Course at the University of Music and Performing Arts, Vienna, where he was Guest Professor for Electroacoustic Composition 2006/07. Since October 2007 he is director of the ICST and Professor for Electroacoustic Composition at the University of the Arts, Zurich. He held a Master Class on Electroacoustic Composition at the Conservatory of Trieste, 2009 and was professor for composition at the International Summer Courses in Darmstadt 2012.


He has been lecturer at universities and symposia and has published essays and texts on artistic research, composition theorie and aesthetics of electroacoustic music as well as on history and identity of Latin American music. Currently research topics at ICST include notation of spatialization, performance practice of electroacoustic music and gestural analysis of electroacoustic music.


List of works Texts and cd-publications