Frank Zabel graduated in piano with Pi-hsien Chen and music theory with Friedrich Jaecker and Roland Löbner at the Cologne Musikhochschule. He is a Professor of music theory at the Robert Schumann Hochschule in Düsseldorf since 2001.
Regular performances of his music take place at international festivals and concert halls worldwide, including World Music Days, Warsaw Autumn, Darmstadt Ferienkurse, Berliner Philharmonie, Gaudeamus Competition, Aalto Theater Essen, Konzerthaus Luzern, Philharmonie Essen, Philharmonie Luxembourg, Tonhalle Düsseldorf, Nationaloper Lissabon, De Doelen Rotterdam and other.
He has received composition commissions from the WDR, BR, SR, Berliner Philharmonie, Bonner Beethovenfest, Gustav Mahler Akademie Bozen, Ensemble Aventure, Neue Philharmonie Westfalen, Theater Gütersloh and many others.
Frank Zabel has been prizewinner in numerous international composition competitions. He also performs as a piano soloist and with the Ensemble Différance.