Karkoschka, Erhard

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Karkoschka, Erhard

Karkoschka, Erhard , German composer, conductor, and pedagogue; b. Moravskâ Ostrava, Czechoslovakia, March 6, 1923. He studied composition with Marx at the Stuttgart Hochschule für Musik (1946–53) and musicology with Gerstenberg and Reichert at the Univ. of Tübingen (Ph.D., 1959, with a diss. on Webern’s early compositional techniques). He was conductor of the orch. and choir at the Univ. of Hohenheim (1948–68), and in 1958 joined the faculty of the Stuttgart Hochschule für Musik, where he became a prof, in 1964 and director of its electronic music studio in 1973; he retired in 1987. He also founded its Ensemble for New Music (1962), which became an independent ensemble in 1976 under the name Contact-Ensemble. From 1974 to 1980 he was president of the Gesellschaft für Neue Musik. In 1987 he was elected a member of the Free Academy of the Arts in Mannheim. He adoped Webern’s serial method of composition, often incorporating electronics and also occasionally resorting to graphic notation in order to achieve greater freedom of resulting sonorities; in his desire to unite the arts, he created various pieces of music sculpture.


Das Schriftbild der neuen Musik (1965; Eng. tr., 1972, as Notations of New Music); Analyse neuer Musik (1976); Neue Musik-Hören-Verstehen (1978); with H. Haas, Hörererziehung mit neuer Musik (1982).


chamber:Opera: Orpheus? Oder Hadeshöhe (1990-92). orch: Concertino for Chamber Orch. (1952); Symphonische Evolution aus zwei eigenen Themen (1953); Streichersonate (1954); Little Concerto for Violin and Chamber Orch. (1955); Polphone Studie for Orch. and Piano obbligato (1956); Symphonia choralis über “Veni Sancte Spiritus” for Wind Orch. (1957); Undarum continuum (1960); vier stufen (1965); Variationen zu keinem Originalthema und aus diesem heraus (1974); Teleologies (1978); Entfalten for Clarinet, Cello, Percussion, Piano, and Orch. (1982–83); Kammermusik (1983-84). chamber:: String Quartet (1952); Divertimento for Wind Quintet (1952); Festmusik for 6 Winds (1954); quattrologe for String Quartet (1966); antinomie for Wind Quintet (1969); tempora mutantur for String Quartet (1971); kammerkitsch for Soprano, Tenor, Bass, 3 Instruments, and Tape (1974); chronos ii:Komposition- Improvisation for 4 Instruments (1975); im dreieck for 3 Flutes or Flute and Stereo Sound System (1975); links und rechts, march for Flute, 2 Microphones, Amplifier, and Loudspeaker (1976); Spiralend I and II for 15 Flutes or 3 Flutes and Tape (1980); Aus einer Figur for 3 Flutes or 3 Flutes and Tape (1982); Bläsergedichte for Woodwind Quintet (1987); Nach Paul Celan for Speaker, Guitar, Flute, Clarinet, Marimba, Viola, and Cello (1988); Klangzeitspektakel for String Quartet, Computer, and Projection (1988); Zeitvariation for Cello (1993); keyboard music. electronic:Drei Bilder aus der Offenbarung des Johannes (1960); LSD (1973); Improvisation (1974); CHRONOS I (1975) and V (1976); Gag-Montagen (1977); Meditationsmühle I and II (both 1982); Zeitmosaik I (1985); Skulpturmusik (1985); multimedia creations; Geburtztaxtextelein, word-music score (1989); etc.

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire