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Benedikt Reising

South Africa | Music

September - November 2018 — Music

Benedikt Reising was born in the Black Forest in 1978. He grew up playing baroque sonatas on his recorder while listening to German punk music. With his 11-piece family band Kicking Edgar Allan Poe he performed their strange but boppy mixture of ska, German pop and rock music, wherever possible in the trijunction of Switzerland, Germany and France switching between recorder, blues harp and eventually the alto saxophone. Along with the saxophone he also discovered jazz and finally he found himself studying jazz saxophone at the Dresden Conservatory with Friedhelm Schönfeld and at the Berne University Of The Arts with Andy Scherrer and Bert Joris.

In his capacity as artistic director of the Jazzwerstatt Bern programme, and as musician, Benedikt has had close contact with South African musicians such as Shane Cooper, Kesivan Naidoo, Kyle Shepherd, Benjamin Jephta, Siya Makuzeni, Mandla Mlangeni and Shannon Mowday to name a few. Located in Johannesburg and Cape Town for his studio residency, Benedikt intends to broaden and deepen his connections to the South African music scene through collaborations. He also intends to spend time exploring composition practice with Carlo Mombelli, while also researching the rhythmic design of local traditional music elements.  The summative goal is to integrate the experience from the musical encounters and research into his playing as well as to create a repertoire of pieces, which reflects this time in South Africa.

Reising currently teaches saxophone, organises an international jazz festival and works as a freelance musician. He performs in very diverse musical constellations ranging from trio settings through to Jazz Orchestras. He’s a member of the award winning band Hildegard Lernt Fliegen, of Le Rex, Der Wawawa, Die Pilze and lots of other projects. He has performed extensively all over the world, performing at  festivals such as the Jazzfestival Willisau, Montreux Jazzfestival, Jazznojazz Zürich, Cully Jazz, Jazz Festival Shanghai, Elbjazz Festival, Vilnius Jazz Festival and the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown.

Pic: Kristoff Meller

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