Johannes Kalitzke (1959, Cologne) is a German composer and vocal works that have been performed in Europe; he is also active as a conductor. Kalitzke studied church music from 1974-76 in Cologne and then studied composition with York Höller, conducting with Wolfgang von der Nahmer, and piano with Aloys Kontarsky at the Musikhochschule Köln from 1978-81. He studied at IRCAM in 1982-83, on a scholarship from the Studienstiftung des Deutschen Volkes, and also studied composition privately with Vinko Globokar while in Paris and electronic music with Hans Ulrich Humpert at the Musikhochschule Köln at the same time.
Among his honors are the Bernd-Alois Zimmermann-Preis from the City of Cologne (1996) and a scholarship to stay at the Villa Massimo in Rome (2003). Numerous ensembles and orchestras have commissioned him, including the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, the Hamburger Sinfoniker, the London Sinfonietta, and the SWF-Sinfonieorchester. His music theatre work Bericht über den Tod des Musikers Jack Tiergarten was a commission from the Münchener Biennale, while his opera Molière oder die Henker des Komödianten was a commission from the region of Schleswig-Holstein. His last opera Die Besessenen has been performed at the Theater an der Wien (2010).
A conductor since 1984, he is renowned for his interpretations of both classical and new music, with ensembles such as Collegium Novum Zürich, ensemble recherche, Klangforum Wien, and most especially musikFabrik, as well as orchestras in Austria, Germany and the UK. He served as leader of the Forum für Neue Musik in Gelsenkirchen from 1986-91 and as conductor of the Musiktheater im Revier in the same city from 1988-90. He co-founded musikFabrik in 1991 and served as its artistic director and conductor from 1991-97. He has served as chief guest conductor of the Österreichisches Ensemble für Neue Musik since 2001.
He led the forums for ensemble conducting of the Deutscher Musikrat in 2001 and at the Salzburger Sommerakademie in 2003. Edition Gravis publishes his music from 1982-2000, while Boosey and Hawkes publishes his music written since then.