Claus Temps is the new chairman of the Freundeskreis

8. May 2023
Claus Temps
Foto: Frank Thissen

Dear members of the Freundeskreis of the Karlsruhe University of Music,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

On 27 April this year, the members of the Freundeskreis elected me as their new first chairman. The previous first chairman, Hans Hachmann, had announced his resignation after 22 years.

In the run-up to the election, the Board had approached me and asked if I was willing and interested in taking on this task and standing for election.

I considered the question a great honour, and after a short consideration and an initial conversation, I gladly agreed. I also consider it a great honour to have been elected to this office by the General Assembly.

What do I bring to this task? What can I bring to the table? And what motivates me for this commitment?

First of all: I was born in Hameln in 1957, grew up in Springe in Lower Saxony on my parents' farm with four siblings in a large rural family and came into contact with music at an early age through the church community and school. At first it was choir singing, later the flute was added. The annual participation in Jugend musiziert gave me the formative experience of being able to deal intensively with things, in this case with music.

However, my studies did not lead me to music, but to law. After my first and second state examinations, I first worked as a lawyer in Bremen before I was able to change to a position with the city of Karlsruhe and after a good two years, in 1990, to the then cultural department. As head of the Department of Music and Visual Arts, I quickly made contact with the diverse art, culture and music scene in Karlsruhe. And again and again there were points of intersection with the Academy of Music, be it in the promotion of the music scene and music projects, be it in the programme planning of the Town Hall Concerts, be it as a visitor to the Academy's concerts. The connections became more intensive with the European Culture Days 2012, which were dedicated to Wolfgang Rihm and in which the conservatoire played an important role in the planning and implementation. The subsequent format ZeitGenuss - Festival für Musik unserer Zeit, which was launched in 2013, was concretely developed as a cooperation between the Cultural Office and the University of Music. I was able to accompany the festival on behalf of the city of Karlsruhe from the very beginning - and experienced the cooperation as a great benefit for Karlsruhe as well as for me personally.

In 2015, I took over the management of the Cultural Office, the funding department of the Cultural Office. In addition, I was assigned the deputy head of office for the Cultural Office. I will retire in mid-2023 due to my age.

Through my more than 30 years of work in the cultural administration of the city of Karlsruhe and for culture and cultural practitioners in Karlsruhe, I am closely connected with the local cultural scene, with the structures and networks as well as with the city society. I would be happy to use this knowledge and experience in my work for the Friends of the University of Music and its members as well as for the students, who are the focus of our commitment.

I would like to mention that in parallel to my professional work, I began a vocal training course which led me in 1993 to Prof. Peter Elkus, an internationally renowned American vocal teacher. Alongside my work in cultural administration and thus "backstage", it opened the way for me to my own artistic activities and projects as a singer (bass-baritone) "on stage". My soloistic focus is on church music as well as on song composition. Certainly, the experiences and encounters that I was and am allowed to make in the process contribute to a better understanding of the conditions of an artistic profession, in this case the profession of musician.

I look forward to being able to contribute my experience from my many years of professional activity in the cultural and artistic environment in Karlsruhe to the work for the Friends of the Karlsruhe University of Music - for the benefit of the Friends, its members, and especially for the benefit of the students of the Karlsruhe University of Music.

With best regards


Claus Temps