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He was born in Yalta, Pershotravnevyi Raion, Donetsk Oblast, and graduated from the Kiev Conservatory in 1971 as a student of Borys Lyatoshynsky and Myroslav Skoryk. He conducted the Dance Ensemble of the Kiev Military District and the Kiev Camerata. He also taught at the Kiev Conservatory.
Ivan Karabyts wrote works for solo piano, orchestra, voice, piano and voice, and works for different combinations of instruments. His works have been performed throughout former Soviet Union nations, many European nations, and the United States. He died in Kiev, aged 57.
His son is the conductor Kirill Karabits.