Rüegg Mathias


# Title Year of Originsort icon Duration Instrumentation Category
1 Two beauties 2011
2 2 Nymphen 2011
3 Two wedding 2011
4 A cooler exercise 2009
5 Move it or leave it 2009
6 Kadenzurlaub 2008
7 Just another lovely Song 2008
8 A Kind of Valse 2008
9 a cool exercise for clarinet and vibes 2008
10 a few horny seconds 2008
11 Something about Eve 2008 6m 30s
12 A little story in blue 2008
13 Die mögliche Zufriedenheit des Herrn Cal Anda 2007
14 für uns zwei ... drei, vier 2007 6m
15 A little message for Paul 2007
16 veni, vidi, vici 2007 8m
17 A little message for Paul 2007 6m
18 Klaviertrio Nr. 1 2006 12m
19 Klavierkonzert Nr. 1 2006
20 Chaos, Cows & Bourgeosie - ein nicht modernes Stück für Streichquartett und Holzbläserquintett 2000 14m
21 about games, tenderness, violence & more 2000 17m
22 Unidentified melodies 1996 5m
23 Short Developements 1996 5m 45s
24 Sunaris - für Triangel und Kammerorchester 1996 6m
25 Over the rainbow - Arrangement 1996 6m
26 Lush life - Arrangement 1996
27 If you could see me now - Arrangement 1996 7m
28 Round Midnight - (Thelonious Monk), Arrangement 1996 6m
29 Farmers & Wifes - a little trilogy in monomany 1995 8m
30 Mood Indigo - (Duke Ellington), Arrangement 1995
31 What's new - (B. Haggert), Arrangement 1995 6m
32 One for my Baby - (H. Arlen), Arrangement 1995 5m
33 Three light movements for five heavy dancers 1995 6m
34 Quelques petits moments pour M - für Trompete und Orchester 1995 30m
35 Die Ballade der verlorenen Tochter 1995 7m
36 Untitled, but lovely 1995 7m
37 Verkehrte Welt 1994 25m
38 Danke, eilt 1994 8m
39 Mozart's Balls - Stringquartett II 1994 5m
40 Fünf lyrische Kurzgeschichten - für Altsaxophon und Orchester 1994 30m
41 M - für Stimme und gemischtes Orchester nach Texten von John Cage 1994 30m
42 Espace 1994 30m
43 Mozart's Balls 1994
44 Sechs halbe Märsche & fünf ganze Nichtmärsche 1993 10m
45 Innocence of clichés 1989
46 Song 1 - Schwarz 1989
47 Fünf Bilder ohne Rahmen - für Saxophon und Symphonieorchester 1987 30m
48 Reflections on "Aubade" by E. Satie 1984 3m
49 Reflections on "Meditation" by E. Satie 1984 4m
50 Satie ist mir im Traum 3x nicht erschienen 1984 6m
51 Reflections on "Gnossienne No. 1" by E. Satie 1984 6m
52 Reflections on "Gnossienne No. 3" by E. Satie 1984 3m
53 Reflections on "Sévère Réprimande" by E. Satie 1984 3m
54 Lieder - für gemischten Chor 1983 - 1986
55 Blue in Green - (Miles Davis), Arrangement für Trompete und Streichorchester 4m
56 The Minimalism of Eric Satie
57 Back to nothing 6m 12s
58 Aschera 4m 40s
59 Panta Rhei 4m
60 Poschiavo 6m 20s
61 Realta 8m 10s

General Information

Date of Birth:  8. December 1952
Place of Birth:  Zurich
Country of Birth: 


In addition to numerous tours and recordings with the Vienna Art Orchestra, works for theatre and film. In recent years, increased compositions for chamber ensembles and soloists. Mathias Rüegg is certainly one of the most important representatives of Austrian Jazz at home and abroad.


PeriodEducationInstrumentTeacherEducation OrganisationLocation
1973 - 1975

jazz piano studies

1973 - 1975

composition studies

teacher training



ever since freelance pianist

1977 - 2010

founder (together with Uli Scherer, Wolfgang Puschnig u.a.) and manager until the dissolution of the orchestra


concept of the multi-media project "Der 8. Tag"


concept of the multi-media project "Jonny tritt ab"

1983 - 1987

Vienna Art Choir: director

1983 - 1990

musical collaboration with Ernst Jandl


concept of the multi-media project "Sens"


concept of the multi-media project "Fe & Males"


Mozartjahr: co-producer of the programme "Not Mo(z)art" commissioned by the BBC


concept of the multi-media project "La Belle et la Bête"


founder of the night-club and artistic director (together with Christoph Huber and Renald Deppe)

1996 - 2010

founding of the association Austrian Music Office (AMO) and managment of the annual Hans-Koller-Award


Century of Song: musical director (together with Bill Frisell)


composition of the music for the new show of the Big Apple Circus

The European Jazz Festival: initiator and artistic director

Das U & E dritte Traumfestival: initiator and artistic director

Jandl Total: initiator and artistic director

compositions for chamber instrumentations and soloists (Corin Curschellas, Michel Portal, Wolfgang Puschnig, Mathieu Michel)

director of workshops in Vienna, Cologne, Hannover and Berlin

Performances (Selection)


Ensemble de Normandie Basse, Caen


performances in Salzburg, Bremen, Zurich, Lucerne etc.

Commissions (Selection)

PeriodCommissionCompositionCommissioner (Organisation)Commissioner (Person)

North German Broadcasting Corporation (NDR) Big-Band

Umo Big-Band Helsinki

Swedish Radio Jazz Group

Serapionstheater Vienna

German Philharmonic Chamber Orchestra

Orchestre de la Normandie Basse

Opus Novum

Sinfonietta Basel


PeriodAwardCompositionAwarding Organisation

Down beat: No. 1 Arranger


Down beat: No. 1 Arranger


Down beat: No. 1 Arranger


Prix Bobby Jaspar der Académie francaise du Jazz


Great Prize, awarded by the SUISA-Foundation


Austrian Prize for Music


music award

several record awards

Description of Style

I compose in the spirit of jazz music. It would be pointless for me to compose as a classical music composer. There would always be some one better. I am impressed and inspired by Mozart, Bartok, Stravinsky, and especially by Steve Reich and John Adams.


Mathias Rüegg about his position as a composer

Press Reviews


As Wagner, Schubert, Brahms, Verdi, Satie and Eric Dolphy already inspired his original musical adaptations, he again, in his own way, reflects the past with avant-garde eclecticism, including his personal views and insights in an opinionated and ironic way as so often before and, at the same time, satisfies the present's claims for innovation. 

Jazzzeit (Werner Rosenberger) 



He creates the right balance between symphonic sound and intimate niches serving the soloist development. He leads his musicians through - partly breathtaking - changes of style and pace and finds time to cite the "Tango From Obango" and others. 




What Mathias Rüegg has found in the attics of music history, what he, as one of the most distinguished Jazz composers, has gained in experience, he is making use of as a composer of contemporary classical music. This is what makes his music so exciting, as well as unmistakable. 

http://www.sinfonietta-archiv.ch (Christian Rentsch) 



Mathias Rüegg - and this is neither preconception nor value judgment - a quick writer, he absorbs everything getting into his range of hearing. Two days ago, Eric Satie and Jean Cocteau, yesterday Wagner and Verdi, tomorrow Eric Dolphy. [...] With his somnambul sense for the spectacular he has been the first to turn Jazz into reproduction music in a way never seen before. His "Original Charts" opened the season of the European performance culture in Jazz. No doubt, this was bound to come, no doubt either that this will form an essential part of the future of Jazz music. The cheerful wit, unashamed, significant, but not too heavy in its significance, light, but not light weight, the indiscreet charm of eclecticism - Rüegg knows how to work this like no other with cunning and at his whim. Viennese humour versus occidental seriousness. 

du (Bernhard Kraller)

Teacher of (Person)

Performer of (Composition)