Dr. Wolfram Knauer (Director)

Wolfram Knauer… studied musicology, English and American literature, art history and sociology and holds a Ph.D. from Kiel University. Since its inception in 1990 he serves as the director of the Jazzinstitut Darmstadt. He had teaching appointments at several major universities and is a regular speaker at international conferences. Knauer’s scholarly credits include several books on as well as numerous essays in German, American and international books and scholarly journals. He serves on numerous international advisory boards (“The New Grove Dictionary of Jazz”, 1988, 2001; Center for Black Music Research, Chicago, since 1999; Deutscher Musikrat; Goethe-Institut 2004-2011). For the spring semester 2008 Knauer was appointed the first non-American Louis Armstrong Professor of Jazz Studies at the Center for Jazz Studies, Columbia University, New York. His most recent books are a (musical) biography of Louis Armstrong as well as a biography of Charlie Parker, both published by the renowned Reclam Verlag.

For his achievements in establishing the Jazzinstitut Darmstadt as an internationally acclaimed information and documentation center on jazz Knauer was awarded the prestigious Hessischer Jazzpreis 2002 (Hesse Jazz Award 2002). Contact: knauer at

Doris Schröder (Project Manager/documentation, archives and exhibitions)

Doris Schroeder… studied art history, archaeology and theater and film studies at Johann Wolfgang Goethe-Universität in Frankfurt/Main. She served as head of arts funding at the cultural department of the city of Ludwigshafen in which capacity she organized many cultural events. She wrote several publications for the Darmstadt monuments preservation office, among them a book about the history of the Mathildenhöhe Darmstadt and another about the area of the Bessunger Jagdhofes which today is home to the Jazzinstitut.

Doris Schröder works for the Jazzinstitut since 1995. She is in charge of the visual archives and organizes regular exhibitions. Contact: schroeder at

Arndt Weidler (Project Manager/general services and concerts)

Arndt Weidler… studied sociology, political sciences and social psychology at the universities in Heidelberg and Mannheim. In his theses he examined the different expectations of a blues and jazz audience before and during their visit to a concert. During his studies he worked as a roadie for American blues bands, then founded his own agency for blues and jazz musicians and organized club concerts and festivals between blues, jazz and gospel. Weidler was a co-founder and the manager of the blues and jazz club “Muddy‘s Club” in Weinheim, Germany. He also worked in the off-air promotion field for several radio stations.

Arndt Weidler works for the Jazzinstitut since 1998. He is in charge of programing for concerts, workshops, conferences and will also help with all general questions. From its inceltion in 2005 until 2011 Arndt Weidler was chairman of the association German Jazz Meeting which organized the show case festival of the same name during the jazzahead!  trade fair in Bremen. He was a long-time member of the nomination jury for the “Neuer Deutscher Jazzpreis Mannheim” and dthe SWR-Jazzpreis. In 2014 (ended in 2017) he has been appointed as member of the jury for the “German Club Award” by the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media, Monika Grütters.  Contact: weidler at


The Jazzinstitut is the smallest of Darmstadt’s municipal cultural institutions. For much of our work we rely on the help of volunteers. Volunteers organized in the Verein zur Förderung des zeitgenössischen Jazz in Darmstadt e.V. (Förderverein Jazz) organize many of the concerts but also the catering in our concert space. For archival work our thanks go to:

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Rainer Grobe (Ehrenamt für Darmstadt e.V.)

… helps to catalogue our LP collections.

Michael Telega

Michael Telega

.. is a specialist for jazz films and digitized the film collection of the Jazzinstitut (

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Günter Schapka

… catalogues several record collections, also maintains the database of our collection for internet access.

Helmut Lücke (Ehrenamt für Darmstadt e.V.)

… catalogues all new CDs and helps prepare the bi-monthly “Darmstädter Jazzkalender”.

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Alexander von Leliwa (Ehrenamt für Darmstadt e.V.)

… indexes some of our special collections.


Rudolf Schäfer

… catalogues our poster collection, digitizes and prepares the material for a future reference database.