Karl F. Gerber

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Karl F. Gerber
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Born (1954-06-02) June 2, 1954 (age 70)
Lörrach, Germany
Alma materAlbert Ludwig University Freiburg
  • Musician
  • Composer
  • Inventor

Karl Friedrich Gerber (*6.2.1954 in Lörrach, Germany) is a German Musician, inventor of computerized mechanical sound sculptures, and a composer based in Munich, Germany.

In 1975 he was a guest student of musicology at Albert Ludwig University Freiburg.[1] with Hans Heinrich Eggebrecht and Albrecht Riethmüller. He studied jazz harmony with German pianist and jazz educator Joe Haider and double bass with jazz musician Adelhard Roidinger at Munich Jazz School (in German). He played in gipsy jazz group Stringbag with jazz guitarist Helmut Nieberle (in German) and jazz violinist Stefan Kalmer.[2] Although Karl F. Gerber is a self-taught composer, he attended summer courses with Carola Bauckholt, Cort Lippe[3], Robert Rowe[4], Joe Viera, Götz Tangerding (in German) and Helmut W. Erdmann (in German). From 1970-1973 he was a vocational training assistant in physics laboratory at Semiconductor industry manufacturer ITT Intermetall (in German). He acquired the higher education entrance qualification in the second educational path and studied physics in Freiburg i. Br.[5] and an LMU Munich[6], from where he graduated Master_of_Science degree in 1982. In 1983 he started working as a technologist, reliability engineer and quality manager for Siemens and successor companies, including Semiconductors branch carve-outs Infineon[7] and Qimonda. Following the 26-year career in Siemens he started a new chapter as a lecturer at GBS-Sabel Technikerschule [8] technical college until in 2009 until 2017. Karl F. Gerber is currently dedicated full time to the interactive violin automat project „Roboterjazz“[9].

Prizes and awards

  • 1993 „Beautiful Numbers“ was awarded in the „Music for Dance“ category in Bourges; published on Double-CD „Lauréates des Puys 93/94“ IMEB/CIME[10]
  • 2005 Composition commission „Unarieunbegleitet“ for interactive Disklavier and Voice from Siemens.
  • 2012 Composition commission „VC3e“ four-handed harpsichord by Stephanie Knauer (in German).
  • 2019 Composition commission „Leo´s Ledsheet“ for Hammerklavier from VIERMETZ[11] foundation.
  • 2020 Award of Distinction for live performance/installation at Matera Intermedia festival [12]

Selected works

  • 1987 Interactive Installation “Perseus - Held in Tausend Gestalten” Munich Galerie X
  • 1988 “Ting” performed in Rome 1988 VII Colloquio di Informatica Musicale[13] 1988, Rome, ATTI, page 198.
  • 1988 „Doomsday“[14] for tape on Munich-based electronics sampler LP played as a live concert for tape at the ICMC 1988 WDR radio in Cologne.
  • 1991 "Pränatal Inferno" [15] by Négligé - Electronic Underwear released on Archegon. Karl F. Gerber is the founding member of the Munich based live electronic group.
  • 1998 “Improvisation with integers” an interactive piece performed with G. A. Delanghe at Power Center for the Performing Arts of Ann Arbor [16] in Michigan, USA. An improvisational live coding project in which Karl F. Gerber edits mathematical formulae on the laptop screen to compose and play music in realtime.
  • 2003 „Stream“ was selected by Deutsche Gesellschaft für Elektroakustische Musik for DEGEM CD7[17] Cybele label.
  • 2012 „VC3e“ for four-handed harpsichord.
  • 2017 “Antriebe” for violin automaton performance, at Akademie Der Künste Berlin Festival Kontakte.
  • 2019 “Installation for experimental violin automat”[18] selected by ISCM for presentation at Wold Music Days, Design and Architecture Gallery, Tallinn, Estonia.


„Also Knauer's second interpretation stands out: Karl Gerber's "VC3e", a piece for harpsichord for four hands, leads its digital-looking title is rightly so. Andreas Skouras and Knauer elicit the instrument in it such an unusual like postmodern sound. The instrument, which in itself has always been latent distorted and overdriven sounds, plays Skouras in the depths like a synthesizer, while Knauer syncopates the upper voice and jazzily translated. The old Instrument that does not allow variation by touch or dynamics allowed, elicit they have such a stoic uniformity that has nothing to do with historicisation, but rather how made for the computer age appears.“(translated by DeepL)

Rita Argauer in the Süddeutsche Zeitung about the Munich premiere Tuesday, 19 March 2013, No. 66.

  • Compositions in database: Kompositionen in der Internationale Dokumentation Elektroakustischer Musik EMDoku[19]

„Négligé-electronic underwear: Prenatal inferno is the name of a new CD with live electronic and live computer music. Many of the titles, such as Waldorfsalat or Das Fraktal Trio, suggest that computer freaks are tinkering, but the recordings can be regarded throughout as successful realizations of the still largely underestimated possibilities offered by electronic instruments. Wolfgang Foag, Karl F. Gerber and Günter Schroth have worked together as composers and performers on all the compositions and demonstrate a feeling for sensual presence, complexity and timing, allowing the listener to experience each piece as a multi-layered new world of sound. The improvisational character leads to a relatively open and unobtrusive relationship between the individual sound, motif or rhythm and the overall structure or form of the piece.“(translated by DeepL)

Prof. Dr. Sabine Sanio in Musik Magazin Positionen(in German) in 1991.

In the media



  1. "University of Freiburg". www.uni-freiburg.de.
  2. "Stefan Kalmer". Voices in Time.
  3. "Cort Lippe". Cort Lippe.
  4. "Robert Rowe". NYU Steinhardt.
  5. "Welcome to the Institute of Physics — Physikalisches Institut". www.physik.uni-freiburg.de.
  6. "LMU München". www.uni-muenchen.de.
  7. "Infineon". Infineon.
  8. "GBS Technikerschule München". GBS Schulen München.
  9. "Roboterjazz". www.roboterjazz.com.
  10. "Various - Cultures Électroniques 12". Discogs.
  11. "Kurt und Felicitas Viermetz Stiftung in Augsburg". www.augsburgwiki.de.
  12. "Matera Intermedia festival". www.materaintermedia.it/.
  14. "Various - #@$ - 11 Mal Elektronische Musik Aus München". Discogs.
  15. "Négligé Electronic Underwear Pränatal Inferno". Discogs.
  16. "Ann Arbor". www.annarbor.org.
  17. "DEGEM CD7 - kontinuum ... bruchlos". www.cybele.de.
  18. "Exhibition Opening: Music Machines". World Music Days Tallinn 2019. March 4, 2019.
  19. "EMDoku". www.emdoku.de.

External links

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