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U. Kutschera

Place of Birth: Germany  

U Kutschera Shot [Profile Image] (150).JPG Ulrich (Uli) Kutschera was born in 1955 in Freiburg i. Br., Germany. He is a Professor of Biology at the University of Kassel (Germany) and a Visiting Scientist in Stanford, California (USA).

He is the author of ca. 300 scientific publications and 12 books.


However, not only natural science, but also music fascinated Ulrich at an early age. He had his first piano lessons when he was 9 years old, although the conservative, Mozart-loving teacher hired by his parents repeatedly complained that his gifted pupil did not want to play what was written down by the likes of Haydn, Clementi and other classical composers. Instead, the young pianist played what he liked, mostly his own variations on the themes provided by the piano teacher via his narrow selection of classical music. As a result, Ulrich developed improvisational skills at the age of twelve.


After a four-year-period of piano instructions, Ulrich did not want to continue to reproduce the music created by other composers, and, as a consequence, started to play the guitar!


When he was 14 years old, his strong interest in classical (and popular) music became overshadowed by another passion: Ulrich began to collect fish, lizards, snakes, frogs and other living creatures from natural habitats in the outskirts of the Black Forest (Freiburg / Herdern), where he lived with his parents. He cultivated these living beings in aqua-terraria and took notes about his collections, as well as the biology and reproductive behaviour of these wild animals. Hence, his career as a biologist can be traced back to those days.


At the age of 19, Ulrich took advanced classical piano lessons to hone his skills as a keyboard player and the ability to improvise, but his fascination of natural science was again stronger than his desire to become a professional musician.  As a compromise, he studied, in addition to his majors (Biology and Chemistry), the Theory of Harmony in the Department of Music (Musikwissenschaftliches Seminar) at the University of Freiburg (1981/82), so that he was better able to write down and refine his piano improvisations.


In 1978, at the age of 23, he met Peter Fischer, who just had set up his first custom-built sound synthesizer – a copy of the then-popular Minimoog, a monophonic analog synthesizer.

Subsequently, Fischer and Kutschera recorded many of Ulrich’s improvised compositions and arranged them for piano and synthesizers, although they did not use sequencers, which were very popular during the 1980’s.

From April to September 1983, the Kutschera / Fischer duo produced - in Fischer’s private recording studio (Freiburg i. Br.) - an album that contained 6 original tracks, most of them composed and performed by Kutschera on grand piano and keyboards. Under the title ‘Hirudo: The First Incarnation’, the pair released a forty-one minute vinyl LP record that was to become rather successful. Within one year, they sold 500 LP’s, most of them in the USA.


The duo separated after Kutschera had earned his Ph.D. in the Biology Department of the University of Freiburg; he left Germany to settle down in Stanford/California (USA), where he started his career as an independent scientist (subject areas: plant physiology and evolutionary biology). However, in his spare time, Kutschera continued to play the piano and create / write down his own compositions.


Between 2001 and 2008, Fischer and Kutschera met regularly in Freiburg to record piano and synthesizer music, and together they released a second album (on CD), entitled: ‘Twenty Years Later’ in 2005.

In 2015, Kutschera started a co-operation with Roman Beilharz, and supplemented / extended a collection of 30 of his compositions; a few of them were co-written with Fischer and other musicians from Freiburg.

These Remastered, definitive versions, inclusive of Kutschera’s ‘Concerto for Piano & Synthetic Orchestra’ {in c-minor}, are released on Compact Discs (U. Kutschera, Piano & Synth-Music - Vols. 1 to 4) as follows:


Volume 1: ‘The First Incarnation’ (1983 / 2017) - Tracks 1 to 6 (42:41) * Available Now *

Volume 2: ‘Twenty Years Later’ (2005 / ’2018) - Tracks 1 to 7 (42.40) * Available Now *

Volume 3: ‘San Francisco Bay’ (2008 / 2016) - Tracks 1 to 8 (43:05) * Available Now *

Volume 4: ‘Black Forest Images’ (2008 / 2019) - Tracks 1 to 9 (ca. 44.00) * Still To Be Released *


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