Suite for Saxophone Quartet (1972), Walter Hartley

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Suite for Saxophone Quartet (1972), Walter Hartley
Year of Composition: 1972    

Composer Biography

1927 —

WALTER S. HARTLEY was born February 21, 1927 in Washington, DC. (HAPPY BIRTHDAY!) After high school and US Army service, he studied piano, theory and composition at the Eastman School of Music (principally with Bernard Rogers and Howard Hanson) where he received his Ph.D. in 1953. Of several teaching positions since then, the most important have been at the National Music Camp at Interlochen (summers 1956-1964), Davis and Elkins College in Elkins, WV (1958-1969) and State University of New York College at Fredonia (1969-1991), now Professor Emeritus. He has written over 200 compositions, the best known being for wind  ensembles, brass instruments and saxophones. He and the former Sandra Mount have been married since June 17, 1960, and have two daughters and five grandchildren.

Composition Notes

"The Suite, my first work for saxophone quartet, was completed June 12, 1972, for the Rascher Quartet, who first performed it that July at its dedicatee Sigurd Rascher's workshop at Union College, Schenectady, and recorded it soon after; it has also been recorded by the Aeolian Quartet. The Amherst Quartet also played it in Buffalo some years ago. Of its five movements: Prelude, Scherzo, Nocturne, Intermezzo and Finale, the Intermezzo was written first and the others followed shortly after. It features, as do most of my works, neo-classical counterpoint and extended tonal harmony; the Finale was partially inspired by that of Haydn's Op. 76/5 D major string quartet, a transcription of which was then in the Rascher Quartet's repertory." -Walter Hartley