Michael Renkel

Guitarist, Composer, live electronica


Renkel born 1965 in North Germany studied classical guitar in Hamburg. He lives in Berlin since 1996. The main emphasis of his work is an interest in open methods of composition and interpretation. His guitar playing straddles tradition and the development of a personal language that includes extended playing techniques and the preparation of the acoustic guitar. In a logical continuation he also extends the instrument via computer technology and he’s the first classical guitarist who connected the instrument in realtime-live processing to the computer.
In his electric guitar work the instrumental material is altered using preparations, laptops and live electronics: the further development of this setup is his self-constructed amplified stringboard. The latest projects include moreover guitar, vibraphone, sampler, sequencer and synthesizer.
Renkel also works with field recordings (e.g. from Indonesia) and composes works – genetic annotations – that experiment with genetic processes via generation, mutation, hybridization and coding. He also works with a composition method that sets a musical graphic in motion in order to question the concept of the work and to turn interpretational repetitions into autonomous, changing actions. His Compositions published at Verlag Neue Musik / Berlin.


“Renkel is genuinely keen to explore and discover what is possible using digital technology. All this without a trace of arrogance on his part; yet he may turn out to be a significant innovator and leader in the field. I hear few preconceived ideas on this recording; I do hear a man guided by his own inner voice, a man prepared to listen and learn.” / Sound Projector


“…. creating spontaneous compositional structures, by finding musicality in non-musical sounds… there’s a beguiling opposition between tone and noise… The result is an intensely musical improvised sound art, by players uncannily gifted in exact choice and fine replacement of sounds.” / The Wire


“This method – and this music – guarantees your listening delight – you sit and wait in fascination. What will come next? “/ Sound Projector


“Every tone, every note, right where it’s supposed to go. No redundancy … Great.” / Björn Dirlack


“Michael Renkel’s music is characterized by unbelievable delicacy and differentiation.” / Neue Zeitschrift für Musik







engl. wikipedia