born in Stuttgart in 1957, studied composition, music theory and piano in Stuttgart, Kassel and Helsinki from 1975 to 1979 and graduated with honours. In 1984, his graduation was followed by the artistic master degree in composition. From 1983 to 1985 Ruoff taught music theory at the State Conservatory of Music in Trossingen, from 1985 to 1987 he received a scholarship from the Ministry of Education and Cultural Affairs, Japan, to study at the “National University of Fine Arts and Music”, Tokyo, and during these years, he was (a) visiting professor at various Japanese universities. Since 1992, Axel Ruoff has been professor of music theory and score playing at the State Academy of Music and Performing Arts in Stuttgart. From 2006 to 2010, he was Vice Dean, from then to 2014 Academic Dean.
For his oeuvre that covers a wide range of areas, he was honoured with many national and international awards: he was scholar of the “Kunststiftung Baden-Wuerttemberg” and of the foundation “Kuenstlerhaus Boswil” (Switzerland) and has won several prizes at composition competitions of the Landesmusikrat Baden-Wuerttemberg; he is laureate of the “Valentino Bucchi” prize, Rome, and of the international composers’ competition “Ensemblia” Moenchengladbach, and he has also won several prizes at the competition for composition “Pro Loco Corciano”, Perugia “ICON”, Torino.
In 1988, he was chosen for the Forum junger deutscher Komponisten (“Young German Composers’ Forum”), Berlin. His works have since been performed in important festivals, such as, among others, “Petersburg Spring”, “Tokyo Summer”. In 2002, he was awarded the Church Music Award of the State, the dioceses and churches of Baden-Wuerttemberg, and in 2011, he received the 1. prize in the Composition Competition Saarlouis.
In 2013, he was awarded the special prize of the GEMA and the BDMV at the 5th German Music Festival in Chemnitz, in 2014, he obtained the 2nd prize in the 3rd international composition competition with regard to orchestral works, “Uuno Klami” in Finland. In 2015, Axel Ruoff was “Artist in Residence” of the “Aichi University of Arts and Music”, Nagoya, Japan.