Sebastian Claren studied Composition, Musicology, Philosophy and History of Art in Heidelberg, Berlin, and Freiburg. His composition teachers were Walter Zimmermann and Mathias Spahlinger. He wrote his master thesis about Johannes Ockeghem’s Missa Prolationum and his doctoral thesis about the complete works of Morton Feldman (Neither, The music of Morton Feldman). He was a lecturer at Darmstädter Ferienkurse and Ostrava New Music Days. 2016-2018 he taught contemporary music at the Musikhochschule Leipzig. Since 2021 he’s assistant professor of composition at Seoul National University. He’s based in Berlin and Seoul.
In his music, Sebastian Claren translates the precision of electronic music and the attention to sound of pop music into instrumental and vocal scores. He has a strong interest in traditional Korean music and studied Daegeum and Janggu with Hong Yoo in Berlin. He persues longtime collaborations with the Berlin-based Solistenensemble Kaleidoskop and the Seoul-based WhatWhy Art project on alternative concert formats.
Sebastian Claren received grants for residencies in New York (DAAD), Paris (Cité Internationale des Arts), Rome (Villa Massimo), and Los Angeles (Villa Aurora). He won numerous prizes such as the Kranichsteiner Prize Darmstadt, the Composition Prize Stuttgart, the Boris-Blacher-Prize Berlin, and the promotion prize of the Ernst von Siemens Musikstiftung. In 2014 he was invited to the International Gugak Workshop at the National Gugak Center in Seoul.
His festival appearances include Auftakt Alte Oper Frankfurt, Bludenzer Tage Zeitgemäßer Musik, California Institute of the Arts, Darmstädter Ferienkurse, Donaueschinger Musiktage, Eclat Stuttgart, Holland Festival, Inselfestival Hombroich, Klangwerkstatt Berlin, Klub Katarakt Hamburg, Kunstfestspiele Herrenhausen, Münchener Biennale, Musik & Gegenwart Leipzig, National Gugak Center Seoul, Operadagen Rotterdam, Rainy Days Luxemburg, Salzburger Festspiele, Seoul Performing Arts Festival, Staatsoper Stuttgart, Tongyeong International Music Festival, Ultraschall Berlin, Wien Modern.
He has worked with prestigious soloists, conductors, ensembles and orchestras such as Yiho Ahn, Teodoro Anzellotti, Sebastian Berweck, Anna Faber, Lucas Fels, Jieun Kang, Tilman Kanitz, Joonyoung Kim, Woongsik Kim, Narae Lee, Kazue Nakamura, Minhee Park, Enno Poppe, Ernst Surberg, Hong Yoo, Stefan Asbury, James Avery, Tito Ceccherini, Olivier Dejours, Titus Engel, Brad Lubman, Manuel Nawri, Walter Nußbaum, André de Ridder, Peter Rundel, Manfred Schreier, Lucas Vis, Ensemble Ascolta, Ensemble Aventure, Ensemble Hand Werk, Ensemble Modern, Ensemble Mosaik, Ensemble Phorminx, Ensemble Recherche, Klangforum Wien, Leise Dröhnung, Neue Vocalsolisten Stuttgart, Österreichisches Ensemble für Neue Musik, Schola Heidelberg, Solistenensemble Kaleidoskop, WhatWhy Art Seoul, Junge Deutsche Philharmonie, Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin, Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Frankfurt, Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Stuttgart.