ensemble for contemporary music




Trio Abstrakt is a Cologne-based ensemble for contemporary music consisting of Salim Javaid (saxophone), Marlies Debacker (piano) and Ramón Gardella (percussion). The trio has dedicated itself to recent repertoire for their specific instrumentation but also for all their various duo constellations as well as to music theatrical pieces or performances with or without instruments.


The trio also works with electric instruments, objects, video, voice and body as well as with electronics - be it tape, additive playback, delays, (guitar) effect pedals, amplifications or other kinds of electronic modulation.


Since the trio's musicians are also keen explorers of their instruments and avid improvisers, dedicated pieces for the trio often make use of their unique personal sound palette.


Trio Abstrakt is a "working band" and the members consider it their main project.




Salim Javaid is a Czech-Pakistani saxophonist and improviser based in Cologne. He has studied jazz and then classical saxophone at the HfMT Cologne as well as contemporary music at the Folkwang University of Arts in Essen.


He works in settings ranging from free jazz and improvisation to playing contemporary classical music solo or in ensembles.


In his solo work and compositions, Salim explores spatiality in music, the relation of acoustic events in time and the flexibility of all parameters, while still pursuing a playful and improvisational attitude and treatment of the material.


His most frequent collaborators are Marlies Debacker (piano, keyboards) and Carl Ludwig Hübsch (tuba) with whom he runs the long-running concert series "Plattform Nicht Dokumentierbarer Ereignisse" in Cologne. Debacker, Javaid and percussionist Ramón Gardella also form the contemporary music ensemble Trio Abstrakt.



Marlies Debacker is a Belgian pianist and performer of free improvised music, free jazz as well as contemporary classical music based in Cologne.


She does extensive research on the sound possibilities of her instrument with a focus on resonance, pedal work, inside piano playing and the use of various preparations, thus allowing her to move between the conventional sound of a piano and various percussive and pseudo-electronic sounds. Apart from playing the piano she often performs on vintage keyboards as well.


After finishing a master degree in Improvisation at the HfMT Cologne under Professor Paulo Alvares, she is currently studying a master in New Music at the Folkwang Universität der Künste in Essen.


Debacker is alongside German tuba player Carl Ludwig Hübsch and saxophonist Salim Javaid co-curator of the concert series Plattform nicht dokumentierbarer Ereignisse in the Atelier Dürrenfeld/Geitel – a platform for improvised and contemporary music. She is also a member of IMPAKT - Cologne's collective for improvised music.


Besides her work as a performing pianist, Debacker is also a piano teacher at the Offene Jazzhaus Schule in Cologne.



Ramón Gardella is an Argentinian percussionist based in Cologne. He studied classical and contemporary percussion at the Conservatorio Superior de Música de la Ciudad de Buenos Aires “Astor Piazzolla” and then at the Hochschule für Musik und Tanz Köln (with Prof. Carlos Tarcha). He now attends his Konzertexamen degree in Cologne and studies a  Master in Neue Musik at the Folkwang Universität der Künste in Essen (with Prof. Barbara Maurer). He is formal member of Trio Abstrakt and Kollektiv 3:6 Köln für Neue Musik.


Ramón has already performed with the Ensemble Musikfabrik, Ensemble Tra I Tempi, Ensemble Modern Orchestra, Beethoven Orchester Bonn, Gürzenich Orchester Köln, Neue Philharmonie Westfallen, Bochumer Symphoniker, Bergische Symphoniker, Jungen Philarmonie Köln.


He participated in important contemporary music festivals like Klangspuren 2016 (International Ensemble Modern Academy), Impuls 2017, Stockhausen Courses Kürten 2017, Ensemble Academy Freiburg 2018, pgnm_Biennale Aktueller Musik Bremen 2018, Ruhrtriennale 2018, Festival Now! 2018, Percussion

Summit Bochum 2018, Acht Brücken Köln 2016/2017.