STORY OF MY PROFESSIONAL LIFE SO FAR

My name is Matthias Strobel and I live in Berlin.

I ❤ music and I embrace Technology!

Music probably is the only constant in my life.
I started playing the piano at the age of five and I got accepted at “The Regensburger Domspatzen” – the world’s leading boys choir at the time – when I was eight years old.

Today, I don’t play the piano or sing anymore but I still DJ from time to time and I enjoy collaborating with other artists to create participatory art and music projects and interactive, multi-sensory installations.

I successfully finished my apprenticeship as a merchant for audio-visual media at the public TV broadcasting station ZDF in 2004 for which I continued working afterward for another two years.

I also hold a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Communications from the University of Applied Sciences, HTW Berlin.

I entered the music tech sector in 2011 when I co-founded the meanwhile internationally recognized and multiple awarded startup Nagual Sounds. What a journey that was. 🙂

I took a short break from the music tech world in 2015 to start Friedrichshain Hilft, a non-profit association with the goal to help refugees who arrived in Berlin during that time. I didn’t expect that this would lead me to establish and manage an entire refugee camp with more than 300 people. This was by far the most intensive time and the biggest learning curve on many levels in my life until today. 

After I handed the camp management over, I founded the social non-profit startup ZwischenWerk to conceptualize and realize interdisciplinary art projects for humanitarian causes and I started the project Creative Coding School to teach socially disadvantaged people skills in emerging technologies.

My passion for music and the great opportunities of new technologies led me to join Music Tech Fest in fall 2016 for which I worked on the management team until I founded MusicTech Germany at the end of 2017.

Today, I am the President of MusicTech Germany, the Federal Association for Music Technology, and Germany’s main point of contact for music technology innovation. I have established a network of global entrepreneurs, music executives, researchers, (inter)national policymakers, and media representatives throughout the years.

I run Wicked Artists, a booking agency for exceptionally creative technology and new media artists which I founded – together with Dennis Kastrup – in 2021. This is the project I put all my heart into at the moment.

I also serve as a consultant, mentor, and independent manager to help accelerate avant-garde approaches from startups across the creative industries. Determined to further the innovative potential – and thus future success – of artists and entrepreneurs, I use my experience and leverage my network to help create the music ecosystem of tomorrow. I passionately work towards improving the overall access to information about research and innovation, the creative environment of the music (tech) industry, and its underlying economic infrastructure. 

I have given lectures at universities such as the Berklee College of Music Valencia, the Norwegian University of Science and Technology Trondheim, Popakademie Baden-Württemberg, or Hamburg Music Business Summer School.

Besides running the association and Wicked Artists, I curate conferences and give workshops on Web 3.0 and I facilitate events on innovation for the music ecosystem to foster the knowledge transfer between visionaries from all intersections of the creative industries. The local event series, Berlin Music Tech Meetups which I started in 2018, has meanwhile grown into a community of more than 1,700 music tech enthusiasts from Berlin.

I also want to contribute to a better world with the skillset and network that I have, and I am extremely happy and grateful that I have met the awesome people from Handiclapped Berlin e.V. in 2020 with whom I have established a very strong partnership since then. Together, we realize projects for better accessibility to cultural live events for handicapped people. In 2020, during the pandemic, we organized the first inclusive online hackathon which resulted in four prototypes of digital open-source tools that could break down some of the existing barriers for disabled people to attend events. We also run workshops to educate cultural institutions on how to provide a more inclusive infrastructure at their events and venues.

I have spoken at conferences around the world, sharing my experiences and expertise on cross-sectoral innovation within vertical industries through emerging technologies and the potential of collaboration for the recreation of the music ecosystem. I served as a judge and mentor on some of Europe’s most prestigious startup competitions and accelerators for music technology.

I am driven by endless curiosity and I am happy that I can say that I made my passion my everyday profession.

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