Amherst Saxophone Quartet Site: Purpose

Amherst Saxophone Quartet, The Third Decade This website is a chronicle of the Amherst Saxophone Quartet’s 30 year journey. We hope the site becomes a useful resource for other saxophonists and anyone interested in building/maintaining an ensemble career in concert music.

The ASQ was founded in 1978 with the intent to be a chamber music ensemble that provided full-time employment for its musicians. Starting in 1986, the ASQ's musicians received an annual salary, health care benefits, and even a retirement plan. The Building Careers listing shares many of the techniques we used to create and sustain our quartet over the long haul.

It's been said that chamber music is "all about the repertoire." A good place to start viewing this site is the Repertoire listing. Once on that page, click on the title of a work and you will be shown any article, review, recording, video, composer biographical info, and description of that work drawn from anywhere in this site's database.

You are encouraged to use the interactive capabilities of this site to add your wisdom, insites, incites, questions, failures, and successes to the discussion! Pages on this site have an 'Add Your Comments' section at the bottom.

[Note: You can change the size of the type (and everything else on this site) by pressing 'Ctrl' and + or - .]

Latest Additions to This Site

At present there are 200 pounds of documents — complete recordings (both CDs and live performances), repertoire listings, financial data, composer biographies, program notes, Tips & Tricks, event timelines, a performance location map, concert program books, reviews, photos, and videos — that are now being added to this site. We plan to complete the process over the next several years (many pounds have already been added). Here are previews of the latest pages, click on a title to view the full page...

 

Here is a listing of all the rules of behavior you will ever need to find peace, happiness, and excellence in ensemble playing. Just follow these five simple rules and life will be wonderful, you will find bliss, contentment, and great wealth as a member of a chamber music ensemble.

"I know that these rules work, because life becomes miserable every time I break one of them." —Steve Rosenthal

 

Leo Smit's "Tzadik" was composed for the ASQ in 1983.

Leo Smit writes: "The tzadik, who appeared in remote and isolated Jewish villages of Eastern Europe nearly 300 years ago, was the maker of wonders and miracles through his joyfully ecstatic music, suffusing the "soul of the Universe" with his divinely inspired song.

Pianist, teacher, and composer, 1939 has concertized, taught piano, and written music for many different media. Heir to a great musical tradition, he is the nephew of George Gershwin and grandson of the legendary pianist/ composer Leopold Godowsky. He has written string quartets, brass quintets, wind quintets, a saxophone quartet, an oratorio, keyboard music, songs and music for interactive media. His CD of the Gershwin Concerto in F was hailed in The Chicago Tribune as " ...

Formed in 1984 by Washington, D.C. area saxophonist, flutist, composer and arranger Clayton Englar, Windmill has developed a unique and highly eclectic sound over the years, drawing not only from jazz but classical, pop, Latin and avant-garde forms, and using a vast array of woodwind instruments: soprano to bass saxophones, flutes and clarinets.

The ensemble carries on a tradition established in the 1930’s by the pioneer of the classical saxophone and founding member of the quartet Sigurd Raschèr, who animated many composers to write music especially for him.