Photographer: Alexander Wenzel/Kunstuniversität Graz ©

Utz Christian

Compositions

# Title Year of Originsort icon Duration Instrumentation Category
1 Violinkonzert 2014 - 2015 25m
2 stele - [canti guerrieri ed amorosi III] 2011 30m
3 drei gilgamesch gesänge - [canti guerrieri ed amorosi I] 2010 15m
4 gilgamesch szenen - [canti guerrieri ed amorosi II] 2010 20m
5 telinga – mulut [ears – mouths] 2009 20m
6 Symphonie Monoton-Silence (Yves Klein) - Transcription 2007 10m
7 Glasakkord 2006 20m
8 passagen:transformation 2006 4m
9 specula 2005
10 05_satie_dekooning_48 - SoundTextInstallation after Erik Satie's Le Piège de Méduse 2005
11 passagen: durchleuchtung 2005
12 vier epigramme 2005 - 2006 28m
13 Speculum 2003 20m
14 repercussion.camouflage.report - (Rückprall.Tarnung.Bericht) 2003 15m
15 the wasteland of minds 2003 - 2004 13m
16 Wu O 2003
17 wüst.land - SoundTextConstellation 2003 - 2010 40m
18 Zersplitterung [Fragmentation] 2002 16m
19 together // apart 2001 10m - 13m
20 Unsichtbares Theater für Ensemble und Live-Elektronik 2001 14m
21 Interference [jiao die sheng luan] - for piano and 8 Chinese instruments 2001 15m
22 Site [Basho] - for gagaku-ensemble and electronics 2001 40m
23 Abstrakte Reise [Chouxiang zhi you] 2000 21m
24 Ouran yizhi / Koinzidenzen - for 6 Chinese instruments 1999 11m
25 Appetition-Dissolution - key music for Hong Wen-Tsien 1998 ~ 30m
26 yao yao ti ti - The night of the insects 1998 9m
27 Sheng-yue-lü (voix-lune-voyage) - pour quatuor vocal (deux sopranos, mezzo-soprano, barytone) 1998 ~ 11m
28 kreise - yuan - Musik-Sprachkonstellation 1998 - 1999 15m - 35m
29 Wiener Blut - Operette in drei Akten von Victor Léon und Leo Stein. Musik von Johann Strauß. Bearbeitung für Instrumentalensemble (10 Instrumentalisten), 8 Darsteller und Klangenvironment 1997 - 1998 ~ 1h 30m
30 Lichtung - audiovisual installation for 2 monitors, speaker, 1 musician 1997 ~ 45m
31 Zum Beispiel Tantalos - 8 Musik-Theater-Szenen im öffentlichen Raum 1997 ~ 1h 20m
32 interjectionen - a commentary 1997 6m
33 mosaic - Musik für zwei Sampler und Computer in fünf Phasen 1996 20m - 30m
34 die zelluloidleichen von marrakesch - for 2 musicians, voices and live-electronics 1996 20m - 25m
35 éloignement x6 - für Menschen und Objekte 1996 45m
36 Circle 1996 12m
37 quarks - 27 parts for piano 1996 18m
38 zeichensetzung - 8 Blätter 1996 - 1998
39 time freeze - Musik für FreiRäume, Lautsprecher und Besucher 1995 45m
40 éloignement - 3 Simultane Musik-Aktionsstücke 1995 - 1997
41 Mehlspeisentango - für Instrumente 1994
42 Leda und der Schwan - für Stimmen und Instrumente 1994
43 open/empty - gefundenes charakterloses & minimales objekt aus 44 tönen 1994
44 Ludwigologie. Ein Exzerpt - game for female singer, loudspeaker, pianist and Bösendorfer-computerpiano 1994 20m
45 Gott-Es-Aua-Schluß - 5n-1 Improvisation über das absolute Sogenannte 1994
46 was irgend - Vision aus "Lichtung" für Sprecher, Mezzosopran, Bariton und Klangenvironment 1994
47 Drei Chansons für Stimme und Klavier 1994 - 1997
48 Yes - Szenischer Monolog nach James Joyce für präpariertes Klavier, Schlaginstrumente, Gesang, Sprache, Aktion, Licht, Projektionen und Tonband 1993 40m
49 Das trunkene Schiff - Improvisationen für Klavier solo 1993
50 Lichtung - music theatre 1993 - 1995 1h
51 éloges - Trois Invocations pour deux pianos 1992 20m
52 Das demaskierte Universum - multi-media dance-theatre based on René Magritte 1992 15m - 45m
53 Fuga à tre voci für Klavier - (Johann Sebastian Bach), Stilstudie 1992
54 Mondnacht - (Robert Schumann), Transcription for orchestra 1992 4m
55 Prélude XII ... (... Minstrels) - (Claude Debussy), Instrumentierung für Orchester 1992
56 Cruda Amarilli - (Claudio Monteverdi), Bearbeitung für Instrumentalensemble 1992
57 Landschaft im Nebel - Sechs kurze Klavierstücke 1992
58 Zeichenlose Töne - Hörstück an Paul Celan 1992
59 28. 1. 1992 - Für Klavier zu sechs Händen und Stimmen 1992
60 Schneepart - Liederzyklus für mittlere Stimme und Klavier nach Gedichten von Paul Celan 1991
61 ... sans compter les temps morts - pour ensemble de chambre 1991 20m
62 Monologe - für Kontrabass und Klavier, zwei Sprecher ad libitum 1991 11m
63 Entrückung - für zwei Violinen und zwei Violen. An Franz Schubert 1991
64 Neiges - Quatre pièces breves pour ensemble de chambre d?après le poème de Saint John Perse 1990
65 Zwei Klavierstücke 1990
66 Germanien - Sprechkantate für zwei Sprecher, Klavier, Baßklarinette und Tonband 1990 15m
67 Chant pour un equinoxe 1990 18m
68 Invention e-moll für Klavier - (Johann Sebastian Bach), Stilstudie 1990
69 Bendictus à 2 voci - (Josquin Desprez), Stilstudie 1990
70 Invention h-moll für Klavier - (Johann Sebastian Bach), Stilstudie 1990
71 Menuett D-dur für Streichquartett - (Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart), Stilstudie 1990
72 Drei Lieder aus dem "Liebesfrühling" von Rückert - (Robert Schumann), Stilstudie 1990
73 Zwei Motetten à 4 voci - (Giovanni Palestrina), Stilstudie 1990
74 Klaviersonate D-dur KV 311 - (W. A. Mozart), Instrumentierung des 1. Satzes/Exposition für Orchester 1990
75 Prélude VI ... (... des pas sur la neige) - (Claude Debussy), Instrumentierung für Orchester 1990
76 Rondes Printanières aus dem "Sacre de Printemps" - (Igor Strawinsky), Bearbeitung für zwei Klaviere 1990
77 Nostalgia - Impressionen für gemischten Kammerchor a cappella 1989
78 Amerikanische Suite - für Klavier zu zwei Händen 1989
79 Quintett für Flöte, Oboe, Klarinette, Horn und Fagott 1989
80 Invention F-dur für Klavier - (Johann Sebastian Bach), Stilstudie 1989
81 Thema con variazioni As-dur für Klavier - (Ludwig van Beethoven), Stilstudie 1989
82 Nocturne für Violoncello solo 1988
83 Der Herbst des Einsamen - Lied nach einem Gedicht von Georg Trakl für Bariton mit Klavierbegleitung 1988
84 Sonate für Violine und Klavier 1988
85 Rhapsodie für Violoncello und Klavier 1987
86 Les quatre éléments - Etude pour guitare 1987
87 Der Tod der Geliebten - Lied nach einem Gedicht von Rainer Maria Rilke für Sopran mit Klavierbegleitung 1987
88 Ballade für Klavier 1987
89 Spanische Fantasie - für zwei Gitarren 1987
90 Fantasie für Orgel 1987
91 Quartett für zwei Violinen, Viola und Violoncello 1987
92 Sonatine D-dur für Klavier - (Muzio Clementi), Stilstudie 1987
93 Marsch für Ventilposaune in B und Klavier 1987
94 Memories - Fantasie für Gitarre in e-moll 1986
95 Quiet Conversations - Duett für zwei Gitarren 1985
96 Sonate für Violine und Klavier

General Information

Year of Birth:  1969
Date of Birth:  27. October 1969
Place of Birth:  Munich

 

Christian Utz studied composition, music theory, musicology and piano in Vienna and Karlsruhe from 1990 to 2000. Dieter Kaufmann, Diether de la Motte, Wolfgang Rihm and Erich Urbanner were among his teachers. In 2002 his dissertation titled "Neue Musik und Interkulturalität" got published. In the following, the CD Site portraying the artist was released (Composers' Art Label).

 

Since autumn 2003 he has been guest professor for music theory and music analysis at the Art University in Graz. Additionally, he is guest conductor for the China Found Music Workshop Taipei Ensemble (Chinese instruments) and artistic director of AsianCultureLink Vienna, which he co-founded in 1999.

 

Decisive artistic impulse for Utz was his contact with Mauricio Kagel, Luca Francesconi, Brian Ferneyhough and Salvatore Sciarrino, among others. From the start he moved away from common compositional concepts and created a series of inter-media projects within the framework of the series KlangArten on the interface between music and drama. His experience with electronic music integrated into his improvisational and composition concepts when instruments and sounds created in real time through the MAX/MSP computer programme relate to each other.

 

Intercultural concepts have been central to Utz's compositions since 1998.

Education

PeriodEducationInstrumentTeacherEducation OrganisationLocation
1987 - 1988

composition, music theory (Russel Smith)

1989

composition (Agata Pyzel)

1989 - 1990

musical form analysis (Clemens Kühn)

1989 - 1990

seminar (Manfred Trojahn)

1989 - 1990

lessons (Kay Westermann)

1990 - 1997

composition

1990 - 1997

composition

1990 - 1997

piano-pedagogy

1990 - 1997

music theory

1991 - 2002

master-courses with Ernst Helmuth Flammer, Mauricio Kagel, Emmy Henz-Diémand (Kl.), Luca Francesconi, Brian Ferneyhough, Salvatore Sciarrino

1993 - 1994

Unterricht (Günther Reinhold)

1993 - 1994

philosophy

1993 - 1994

composition

1993 - 1997

Institute for electro-acoustics and experimental music

1995

summer academy

1995

music theory: completion with two papers on Erwin Schulhoff and Edgar Varèse, Master of Arts

1997

diploma

1997

diploma composition

1998

session du composition

1998 - 2000

doctoral studies in musicology (Prof. Manfred Angerer, Prof. Peter Revers), conferment of the title Dr.phil (with distinction)

1999

"Stage d'informatique musicale"

2001

composition seminar, Künstlerhaus Boswil/Switzerland

2002

"Composition Seminar"

Activities

PeriodActivityOrganisationLocation
1991 - 1995

founder (with Thomas Dézsy), realisation of different concepts combining musico-dramatical works, composition and improvisation

1993

performance of the entire piano works of Morton Feldman

1995

international festival for the contemporary musical performance "Das innere Ohr" (curator, publication of the festival catalogue)

1996 - 1997

editor

1997

Computermusik-Workshop, Maribor/Slovenia: teacher

1997

Zum Beispiel Tantalos: musico-dramatical works in public spaces

1998

European Foundation of Chinese Music Research CHIME: presentation

1998 - 2000

Thesis on "Die Musik Tan Duns im Kontext interkultureller Rezeption in neuer westlicher und ostasiatischer Musik seit 1950"

1998 - 2001

cooperation with Asian artists and ensembles, such as poet Yang Lian, Contemporary Music Ensemble Seoul and Wakatake Gagaku Society Japan, pipa-player Wang Ming and with the China Found Music Workshop - composition for traditional East Asian instruments and mixed castings

1998 - 2002

AsianCultureLink: founding for making possible cultural exchange with Asian countries

2000

National Institute of the Arts in Taipei/Taiwan: residence for research, main topic of research: "Das Verhältnis von traditioneller und neuer Musik in Taiwan seit 1970" and compilation of an Internet archive of contemporary Taiwanese music; presentations and seminars about the reception of intercultural compositions; seminars on live electronic music

2000 - 2003

Ensembles China Found Music Workshop: conductor at international concerts and festivals (Vienna Konzerthaus; Deutschlandfunk, MaerzMusik/Berlin Festival)

2001

China Found Music Workshop: European tour as conductor with concerts in Cologne (Deutschlandfunk), Vienna and Zagreb (Music Biennale)

2001

Wakatake Gagaku-Ensemble: cooperation in Projekt Site, elaborated and carried out at Akiyoshidai International Art Village/Japan

2001

CHIME conference: presentations

2001

International Isang Yun Academy: presentations

2001 - 2002

executive producer

2001 - 2002

cross//roads: conception and series of events with East Asian and European composers (Porgy & Bess)

2002

China Found Music Workshop: conductor at the opening concert of the "MärzMusik" Festival of the Berliner Festspiele

2002

UtzMusic Prints Vienna: founding of his own publishing house

2002

CD releases: "SITE" (instrumental pieces 1999-2001) and "time freeze" (elektronische Musik, 96/02)

2002

Neue Musik und Interkulturalität. Von John Cage bis Tan Dun (supplements to the musicology archive 51, Franz Steiner publishing house, Stuttgart 2002): publication

2003 - 2004

guest professorship in music-theory and music-analysis

2004

ever since contracted professor

2005 - 2006

teaching assignment at the Department of Music

2007 - 2008

guest-professorship at the National Chiao-Tung University Taipei (Taiwan) and at the University of Tokyo (Japan)

2008

publication of the Portrait-CD "transformed" (Spektral Records)

2008 - 2010

co-editor of the "Lexikon der Systematischen Musikwissenschaft" (Laaber Publishing)

2009

concerts, presentations, workshops to his own music in Jakarta (Indonesia)

2010

participation in the symposium "Musik und Sprache in der Musik der Gegenwart" in cooperation with the Institute for music-aesthetics

2011

guest-professorship in Applied Musicology

2011 - 2013

co-editor of the "Lexikon Neue Musik" (Metzler Publishing)

2012 - 2013

teaching at the Department of Music

2012 - 2014

leading the research-project "A Context-Sensitive Theory of Post-tonal Sound Organization", funded through the Austrian Science Fund (FWF)

Performances (Selection)

PeriodPerformanceCompositionOrganisationLocation
1991
1993

Soundways

1994

 

1995
1996
1998

Sarah Lawrence College

1999
1999

National Concert Hall Taipei (China Found Music Workshop)

2000

together with the Arditti-Quartett

2001

together with the Varianti Ensemble

2002

opening concert at the concert hall of the Arts Academy

2003

 

2004
2005
2006

Akademie für Tonkunst

2007

Asia Pacific Festival Wellington (New Zealand)

2009

Theater Salihara, Jakarta (Indonesia)

2011

Klangforum Heidelberg

Commissions (Selection)

PeriodCommissionCompositionCommissioner (Organisation)Commissioner (Person)
1995

Multimediale 4 Karlsruhe

1999

Kulturtage Lana

2000

EXPO 2000 Hannover: Austrian cultural programme

2001

Contemporary Ensemble Korea (traditional Korean and Western instruments)

2002

Reis&Brot/Duisburg

2003

Neue Musik in Europa Cologne

2004

Wiener Konzerthaus

2006

MaerzMusik Berlin, Berlin Festival

2009

Theater Salihara, Jakarta (Indonesia)

2011

Klnagforum Heidelberg

Voix Nouvelles Royaumont

Awards

PeriodAwardCompositionAwarding Organisation
1993

Erasmus: scholarship for a student residence in Karlsruhe

1996

stipendiary at the Künstlerhaus Schloß Wiepersdorf in Berlin, recommended by Mauricio Kagel

1996

Max-Brand-Prize for electro acoustic music

1997

promotion

1998

state scholarship for composition

1999

Landeshauptstadt Stuttgart: composition prize

1999

scholarship for a 9-month stay at Künstlerhof Schreyahn

2000

Fondation Sino-Française Pour l'Education et la Culture (Council for Cultural Planning and Development), Taipei/Taiwan: research scholarship

2001

Akiyoshidai International Art Village Residence Support Program, Japan: scholarship

2001

Austrian Research Association: project promotion

2002

state scholarship for composition

2002

Austrian Ministry of Education and Arts: financial promotion for CD-distribution

2002

ever since regular project-sponsorship

2007

scholarship of the National Council Taiwan

2008

Austrian Ministry of Education and Arts: financial promotion for CD-distribution

2009

publication-sponsoring by the Country of Styria

publication-sponsorship

Description of Style

In my work as a composer, I attempt to thematize "contextuality", or making possible and realising connections, whereby interculturally accentuated contextuality has been in the foreground since 1998. Music can provide a framework in which relationships between art and every-day experience can be brought about, as well as between different aesthetic and cultural identities, between different artistic and other forms of expression. In this feedback to "reality" the art form-specific utopia space or the "unsolved mystery" should of course not be lost. The music should not have a subordinate role in relation to the demands of every-day life, but should make "concrete utopias" truly audible.

 

"Synthesis" can have something violent about itself in regard to art, against which a concrete utopia can be shown as an independent, non-hierarchical articulation of the individual. In this way, a more complex relation between the elements is possible, as in "controlled" homogenization which tends to cause the identity of the individual to disappear.
All this gains more significance when dealing with interculturalism, or with several cultural identities, traditions, and culturally infused ways of seeing, thinking and hearing. The Japanese philosopher Kitaro Nishida (1870-1945) has thought up concepts with his two terms, "contradictory self-identity" (mujunteki jikodoitsu) and "discontinuous continuity" (hirenzoku no renzoku) which can maybe outline what the aim of my music has been since 1998: "Neither has the identity or the general priority over the difference or the individual nor does the opposite relation have priority. Both are equally primordial and define each other. [...] Time is neither a mere continuity nor is it an accidental series of instants. Time is much more the dialectic simultaneousness of continuity and discontinuity. You and I are neither simultaneously simply identical, nor are we absolutely separate from each other. The discontinuous continuity refers to an in-between space which rejects extremes, calling them false simplifications."

 

Rolf Elberfeld, Christian Utz

Press Reviews

2003

The "Unsichtbare Theater" written by Christian Utz for a maximum line-up is another fine example for how the live-electronic functions are just as a speeding up and transforming the sound. [...] The electronic elements produce a more superficial effect, as Utz teems with expressive energy and fantasy.

Aargauer Zeitung

 

20. November 2001

The impression given by the world premiere of 'Kreise-Yuan' for soprano (highly virtuoso: Angelika Luz), instruments and recording, a composition written in 1999 by Christian Utz, was even more expressive. Thereby he wanted to create a kind of 'music language constellation', in which poems by Yang Lian, Bo Juyi and Christine Huber are assigned clear musical parts and a process of renewal and revival is set in motion. Precisely the polyphonic dialogue and sound combinations were fastidiously elaborated.

Badisches Tagblatt

 

16. February 2001

Utz evokes through the joining of exotic instruments such as the pipa and the shakuhachi, as well as through constant glissandi of strings and winds, a psychedelic sound atmosphere, like a trip into the deeper layers of consciousness; a true proof of talent.

Stuttgarter Zeitung

 

13. February 2001

Christian Utz was successful in combining Japanese and European art music in "Kreise - Yuan" for soprano, instruments and recording (1999). The hinges which join the East to the West are so finely built, so subtle in their harmonic ability to bind, that the captions "Polymorphie I-V" and "Insel 1, 2, 3" become self-explanatory. The piece is also a gentle liaison of eastern and western melodic structures, finely spun by Angelika Luz (soprano).

Stuttgarter Nachrichten

 

19. June 1999

The composer, who lives in both Vienna and Taiwan, explored the "field of tension between Western and Eastern cultures" in about 20 minutes. His trip with the four stages of darkness, wonder, days and path not only heeds wanderlust, but also homesickness, between West and East; a trip within. In three stations between scattered intersections, each of three quartet musicians becomes a speaker and drummer. They exchanged their classical instruments for such instruments as rain stick, lamellophone, Peking opera gong and cymbals.
The group wants to appear confusing at first, but in the end Christian Utz opts for a calm sound stratum. He follows the Taoist wisdom that great music has little sound. This aesthetic twist had a fascinating effect.

Hannoversche Allgemeine Zeitung

 

7. June 1999

The collection of live recordings of Christian Utz's works surprises through a clear, rhythmic tonal language with a profound impact without any misunderstandings - something highly uncommon in contemporary music. [...] The kaleidoscope of differing texts and sources [...] is proof of how Christian Utz confidently employs language. [...] He trusts the strength of the foreign material and the lack of all too Western opposing poles leaves the comparison of the very self-sufficient test and music levels much space and time.

Dissonanz/Dissonance 80 (Rico Gruber)

Éloignement was the title of this work, which exists in several versions. [...] a space sound action creating an amazing listening experience. The first part focused on pure music. Jan Czaijkowski played the 27 mostly minute particles of the concert version of "Éloignement", here termed "Quarks". These are tensely charged sediments, very expressive, seldom lyrical, often hot-tempered, and marked by clear themes or motifs, often doted with hammering rhythms. The 20-year-old composer [...] takes complete advantage of [...] the key spectrum of the piano. The presentation of the simultaneous performance of two arrangements for flute and piano was extensively complex, and each included electronic music. Utz set the timing, the order of the parts was decided by the performers. Camilla Hoitenga's and Jan Czajkowski's renditions were offset by sounds and projections of the instrumental sounds, to which gestures and poses (such as lying down or walking) were added, leading to an enormous density of material. [...] Hefty applause from the small audience signified a clearly positive reception.

Landeszeitung, Niedersächsisches Tageblatt fr die Lüneburger Heide

Discography, Projects

Projects/Diskography:

  • 2008: transformed (Spektral Records)
  • 2002: Site (Composer's Art Label)
  • 2001: Internationales Kompositionsseminar Boswil 2001 (Künstlerhaus Boswil)
  • 1995: conserved (Extraplatte)

Recording Performer of (Composition)

Librettist of (Composition)

Contact Person of (Organisation)

Contact, Links