Awarding Giga-Hertz Prize 2013
Web banner IMATRONIC 2013 at ZKM | Karlsruhe
Award Ceremony with Concerts
Sat, November 30, 2013 3 pm CET, Award Ceremony

Since 2007, the highlight of the IMATRONIC festival has been the presentation of the Giga-Hertz Award. This year, the evening presents a fascinating overview of artistic work in the field of electronic media: spectacular works and fascinating presentations await the public, ranging from dance performances with noise music, from SoundArt presentations through to spatial music in the ZKM_Sound Dome through to live music and pieces that were produced in the SWR EXPERIMENTALSTUDIO. 

The Giga-Hertz Prizes for Electronic Music, each of which is endowed with 10,000 € are co-presented by the ZKM and the SWR EXPERIMENTALSTUDIO Freiburg; the prizes for 2013 will go to John Chowning and Francis Dhomont. The production prizes, each of which is endowed with 8,000 €, honor outstanding young international artists for their current compositions and productions in the area of electronic music. This year’s award winners for production are Daniel BlinkhornLeo HofmannAlexander SchubertYing Wang and Roque Rivas.

This year emphasis is placed on SoundArt: the contemporary significance of this field is honored by three award winners: the pioneer of musique concrete, Pierre Henry, the artist Evelina Rajca and the British national Anthony Elliott


The Award Winners

John Chowning
“Composer and scientist John Chowning set new standards in electronic music during the 1970s [...]“, was the jury’s assesment when presenting the Giga-Hertz Award to John Chowning. 

Francis Dhomont
The jury’s statement in presenting the award to Francis Dhomont: “Francis Dhomont is honored for his influence on the modern language of sounds. [...]“

Daniel Blinkhorn
The compositions and audiovisual works of the composer, sound and media artist from Sydney are increasingly performed at international festivals. As an enthusiastic researcher of sound, he works in numerous different, creative, academic, research and teaching contexts and above all dedicates himself to specifically local field recordings. Following his studies at the Australian universities, the College of Fine Art at the University of New South Wales, and at the University of Wollongong, he gained his doctorate with distinction in 2007.

Leo Hofmann
The Bern-based composer and media artists, Leo Hofmann, works with the forms of the radio-play, and frequently composes on the basis of the human voice. With his intermedia collages comprising words, sounds and gesture, he deals with the altered possibilities of music and scenic design. He also composes music for theater production and works on radiophone pieces as well as sound installations. 

Alexander Schubert
The diverse works of the musician and composer exhibit multimedia and graphic elements. Alexander Schubert’s works are, in principle, cross-genre at the interface on acoustic and electronic music. Thus, formally written music is as much part of his live electronic compositions and audiotape works as are the design of software setups and the sensor-based extension of instruments for intuitive operation in an improvised context. He studied computer science and cognitive sciences in Leipzig, and has been working towards his doctorate since 2011 in the field of sensor-supported, electroacoustic performance; he teaches at the Lübeck Academy of Music and is a free-lance musician. 

Ying Wang
A native of Shanghai, Ying Wang initially studied composition at the Shanghai Conservatory of Music. Advanced studies took her to Germany in 2003, to the Cologne Academy of Music. She has been studying electronic composition since 2008. Her works are written for various forms, from solo pieces and electronic music through chamber music and orchestral works.

Roque Rivas
Bon in Santiago, Chile, Roque Rivas began his musical career as a jazz musician. After studies at the music conservatory in Santiago, he relocated to Lyon to pursue studies in electroacoustic composition and computer music, before travelling further to the Conservatoire national supérieur de musique et de danse in Paris. From 2006 till 2008, he studied composition and computer music at IRCAM. Rivas is a specialist of live electronics, whose works have been performed at renowned festivals worldwide.

Pierre Henry
Pierre Henry is considered one of the pioneers of Musique Concrete and a source of inspiration for the young generation and considered the father of techno music.

Evelina Rajca
The Cologne-based artist, Evelina Rajca, was awarded one of the Giga-Hertz-Prize for SoundArt prizes for production. The jury enthused about the playful manner in which Evelina Rajca trans- formed her sound sculptures into performative actors in her work "Explosive Conductor", which gave rise to a musical composition from the aggregate states of the material.

Anthony Elliott
The British national, Anthony Elliott, was likewise awarded a prize for production. The jury was convinced by his artistic approaches which represent the playful and humorous dissolution of fixed concepts of media and genre terms, and the transfer of a sculptural view of sound through performative or improvisational approaches.

Poster IMATRONIC 2013 at ZKM | Karlsruhe

Main Award Winners 2013

John Chowning (USA)

In the 1970s, composer and scientist John Chowning set new standards in electronic music. Through the method of spatial simulation he advanced one of Stockhausen’s integral fields of activity. He recorded the laws of digital frequency modulation and used these systematically for the synthesis of specific spectra of instrumental timbres. He summarized these insights in his pioneering composition »Turenas«, which appeared twelve years after his work »Kontakte«. The patent which emerged from the digital FM sound synthesis went on to revolutionize the world of music. After the patent for Djerassi’s contraceptive pill, it advanced to become one of the most lucrative patents Stanford University ever realized. The experimental music and, above all, the 1980’s pop music would be unthinkable without the FM synthesis. It may therefore be considered as key aspect of twentieth century culture.

John Chowning

Web banner IMATRONIC 2013 at ZKM | Karlsruhe

Francis Dhomont (France)

Francis Dhomont is honored for his influence on modern sound language. After a long period of activity in the aesthetic milieu around Pierre Schaeffer, the composer took up a position in Montreal in 1979. Here, he developed his own style, where he not only drew substantial attention in the field of Musique Concrete: Through his university work he became one of the most influential teachers in the Canadian scene, which was one of the most successful scenes worldwide. Dhomont’s style, poised between word and sound composition, is one of kind. Over the course of his creative activity, Dhomont perfected Schaeffer’s idea of the tonal icon and conferring on it a forcefulness that was to later culminate in the concept »cinema for the ears«.

Francis Dhomont

Francis Dhomont

Production Prize Winners 2013

for »Assemblage« (2011-12), for piano, ensemble and electronics

Sponsorship Award Winners 2013

for »frostbYte – Red Sound« (2013), Fixed Media

Main Award Winner Giga-Hertz Award for Sound Art 2013 | Pierre Henry (France)

Pierre Henry is regarded as one of the pioneers of Musique Concrète. As a pupil of Nadia Boulanger and Olivier Messaen, he met Pierre Schaeffer in 1949 with whom he created the »Symphonie pour un homme seul«, but also the experimental opera »Orphee 53«, which provided an eclat in Donaueschingen. In addition to these compositions, which were decisive for the aesthetics of a new music, he also composed Henry created numerous dance compositions for choreographies by Maurice Bejart and Alwin Nikolais. In addition to these already historical merits, Henry is also a role model for the younger generation and is regarded as one of the fathers of techno music.

Pierre Henry

Portrait of Pierre Henry at the ZKM

Sponsorship Award Winners Giga-Hertz Award for Sound Art 2013

for »Explosive Conductor« (2012-13), audiovisual installation


in front of the ZKM_Media Theater
Evelina Rajca: Explosive Conductor (Videoloop)

3 p.m.
ZKM_Lecture Hall
Eric Darmon & Franck Mallet: Pierre Henry. The Art of Sounds (Fr 2013)
Sacha Goldman: À la Croisée des Chemins de Pierre Boulez (Ger/Fr 2013)
Film Screening

7.30 p.m.
Award Ceremony
Peter Weibel, Chairman ZKM | Karlsruhe
Klaus Stapf, Mayor City Karlsruhe
Jürgen Walter, Secretary of State, Ministery for Science, Research and Art Baden-Württemberg
Moderation: Markus Brock

Chicks on Speed: Scream

9.30 p.m.
ZKM_Foyer Champagne Reception

9.50 p.m.
ZKM_Media Theater
Dai Fujikura: Sparking Orbit
Cristóbal Halffter: Noche Pasiva del Sentido

10.30 p.m.
ZKM_Music Balcony
Buffet & Reception
Simon Katan: Cube with Magic Ribbons
Anthony Elliott: rheos-stat "A flowing, Stream"

11.10 p.m.
John Chowning: Turenas
Kumiko Omura: Dance of Hagoromo
Francis Dhomont: Avatarsson

12.15 a.m.
Douglas Henderson: Whiteshadows
Alexander Schubert: Your Fox’s a Dirty Gold

12.50 a.m.
ZKM_Media Theater
Kasper T. Toeplitz & Myriam Gourfink: data_noise


Imatronic (Giga-Hertz Award) 2013


Ludger Brümmer (Composer, Head of ZKM | Hertz-Lab)
Gilles Gobeil (Composer)
Detlef Heusinger (Artistic Director of SWR Experimentalstudio)
Peter Weibel (Artistic Director of ZKM | Karlsruhe)
Margarete Zander (Curator Ultraschall Festival, Berlin)
Christian Zanési (Artistic Director of GRM Paris, Composer) 


Experimentalstuido des SWR ; SPEX