Iris ter Schiphorst was born in Hamburg in 1956. After completing her piano studies and embarking on a busy schedule of concert performances she spent two years travelling around the world. Upon returning to Germany she studied theater studies, cultural studies and philosophy in Berlin. Her extensive list of works encompasses all musical genres, and her many years as a practicing musician (both as a classical pianist and later as a keyboardist, bassist, drummer and sound engineer) have strongly influenced her approach to composition.
She has received numerous awards and fellowships for her work as a composer. Iris ter Schiphorst currently teaches composition at the Berlin University of the Arts and is responsible for the “Neue Musik im Diskurs” series at the university’s Institute for New Music. Since 2013 Iris ter Schiphorst is a member of the Berlin Akademie der Künste. In february 2015 she received the renowned Heidelberger Künstlerinnenpreis.