Ralf Benschu

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Ralf Benschu (born April 25, 1962 in Potsdam ) is a German musician. He was best known as a member of the band Keimzeit . He plays the saxophone , clarinet , flute and bagpipes .

Musical creation

Although he did not come from a family that was not musically influenced, he received his first music lessons on the clarinet at the age of ten at the Potsdam Music School. From 1987 to 1991 he studied saxophone and clarinet at the “ Hanns Eisler ” music academy in Berlin . Since 1986 he has been working as a freelance musician.

Germination time

Benschu joined “ Keimzeit ” in the late 1980s and was featured as a guest musician on her debut album Irrenhaus . From 1990 to 2009 he was a permanent member of the group. He succeeded in decisively enriching the timbre of the band , which was initially deeply rooted in the GDR blues rock. This is particularly evident in the pieces Amsterdam from the album Kapitel Elf as well as Gott will (brass section) and 83 from the album Primeln & Elefanten . But since the band started working with producer Franz Plasa (first in 1998 on the album In the electromagnetic field ), Benschu's influence has waned significantly - at least during the studio recordings. Saxophone solos and sophisticated brass sections rarely have room in the newer pieces. Until 2007 he was able to develop the charismatic effect of his playing in live concerts. After the band's tour break in 2008 he was still involved as a guest musician on the twelfth studio album, but will not be involved in any concert in 2009. At the end of 2013 he was involved in the recordings of the album together by Keimzeit and the German Film Orchestra Babelsberg.

Norbert Leisegang , (singer and front man of “Keimzeit”) said in an interview: “Ralf Benschu, the saxophonist, has had little to do lately. He made it clear that the last three albums are actually not his albums. Therefore he also works with other musicians. That brings a lot of explosive material, so that we can always threaten to fall apart. [...] "

Saxophone & organ

Together with the cantor of the Margarethenkirche church in Gotha ( Thuringia ), church music director Jens Goldhardt , Benschu forms the duo "Saxophone & Organ".

In 1996 Benschu was invited to musically help shape the inauguration of the new organ of the Trinity Church in Sondershausen . It was there that he first met the organist Goldhardt. After the successful premiere at the inauguration of the organ (1997), the two musicians decided to continue their collaboration. Since then they have released 6 albums together. The range of the duo is remarkable: in addition to Bach , Vivaldi and Mozart, there are also pieces by Astor Piazzolla and Goran Bregović . There are also some original compositions.


Parallel to the groups already mentioned, he makes music in the projects “Jazzalive”, “Meier's Clan” and “Benschu & Intrau”. He can be heard as a session and live musician at Gerhard Schöne's publications and concerts and composes pieces of music for other performers, e.g. B. for the solo album by Sonny Thet ( Bayon ). He also played in various orchestras, a. a. with the orchestra of the Friedrichstadtpalast and as a soloist with the Loh-Orchester Sondershausen . As a music teacher, he teaches at the City Music School Potsdam and the University of Potsdam.


Germination time

Saxophone & organ

  • Saxophone & Organ (1997)
  • Choral Music (1999)
  • through the wind (2001)
  • concerto europeo (2004)
  • Elements (2007)
  • Cloud 7 (2011)
  • Moments (2015)

Meier's clan

  • Saxophone Quartet (2001)
  • Saxophone Quartet (2004, live album)

Benschu & Intrau

  • Jazzics (2009)

With Gerhard Schöne and Jens Goldhardt

  • I open the door wide in the evening (2010)
  • Come in the house (2017)

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Dominik Peters: Interview with Jens Goldhardt and Ralf Benschu at the OrgelSax concert in Schwerin. elektrowerk.de, March 12, 2006, accessed on August 3, 2009 .
  2. Larissa Schulz-Trieglaff, Thomas Gehringer: Interview with Norbert Leisegang . In: New Germany . November 23, 2002.
  3. Short biography Ralf Benschu. "Benschu & Intrau" website, accessed on August 3, 2009 .