Skip to main content


Marcus Ratka

Artistic Major(s): Composition and Music Theory, Guitar

Founded the JAM MUSIC LAB – Conservatory for Jazz and Popular Music Vienna in 2012 together with Andreas Bartosch and Johannes Valentin, Managing Director of the JAM MUSIC LAB Ltd. 


  • Currently: University for Music and Performing Arts Vienna: PhD Studies in “Composition in Jazz“
  • Musicology Vienna: Mag. Phil. (2007)
  • Conservatory of the City Vienna, Diploma in Jazz theory (1999), Diploma in Jazz guitar (1997)

Work Experience

  • Since 2011: Managing director and director of the JAM MUSIC LAB – Conservatory for Jazz and Popular Music Vienna
  • Since 2010: musical head of the company "4tune Media Productions” in Vienna
  • 2002: Founder und manager of the ensembles Chameleon Changes and Zur Eisernen Zeit
  • Since 1990: Freelance musician, composer and project manager: musical and artistic collaborations with Joe Zawinul, Sylvester Levay, Harry Kupfer, Jérôme Savary, Werner Herzog, Hansi Lang, Paul Capsis, Roman Gottwald, Thomas Gansch, Mario Gonzi, Georg Breinschmid, Bumi Fian, Herwig Gradischnig, Erika Pluhar, Boris Eder, Theater an der Wien and various TV channels including ORF, ARD and RTL

Voluntary Services (Abstract)

  • Member of the Executive Board: Music in Progress: Society for applied research in Jazz and Popular Music
  • Member of the Executive Board: “Kulturverein Gasometer”
  • Function as a juryman at “Live Music Now!” of the Yehudi Menuhin Organisation 
  • Advisor of the Falco private foundation

CD Publications (Discography) - Abstract

  • Chameleon Changes, The Dangerous Lab, 2016
  • Captain Austria, Quinton Records, 2012
  • Natural Born Viennese, Quinton Records, 2012
  • A Night at Jazzland, 4tune productions, 2012
  • Hotel Sweet Dreams, 4tune productions, 2011
  • Chameleon Changes, Preiser Records, 2005
  • Boulevard Delirium. Paul Capsis, Viennese Schauspielhaus, 2004
  • Zur Eiseren Zeit with Christian Qualtinger, Preiser Records, 2003
  • Oh play dat thing! Salonorchester Alhambra, Edition Berliner Musenkinder, 2002
  • Caroline Vasicek und Boris Eder singen Hermann Leopoldi, ORF Edition, 2002
  • Die Drei von der Tankstelle, BMG, 1998
  • Eintänzer gesucht. Salonorchester Alhambra, ORF Edition, 1997

Publications (Abstract)

  • Line Writing. University of Vienna, musicology institute 2007
  • “Wie funktioniert Musik?” Laaber Verlag 2010
  • “Composition in Jazz”, PhD Diploma Thesis, Music University Vienna, since 2010
  • Musical Education 2012, “Chancen und Herausforderungen für die Zukunft”, Austrian Musikatlas 2012

Teaching & Research

  • Since 2011: JAM MUSIC LAB as founding director, head of the areas studies, teaching and curriculum development; since 2013 strategic development in the area of artistic Research
  • 2008-2011: Head of the composition, arrangement and music theory classes in the Jazz department of the Music School “Franz Liszt” in Weimar. Collaboration in developing the curriculum in the transition in bachelor’s and master’s degrees. 
  • Since 2007: University for Music and Performing Arts Vienna: PhD Degree focusing in the area of jazz research, title of the work “Composition in Jazz“.
  • 1998-2008: Gustav Mahler Conservatory Vienna


Publications and Achievements