Program Book 1984 page 03
A Letter From the Amherst Saxophon Quartet


This is our seventh season, a remarkably long time for four musicians to perform, work, and grow together. Among the most significant reasons is the fact that we are lucky enough to be located in Buffalo and Western New York.

Buffalo has always had a national reputation for producing fine musicians, far more than many larger metropolitan centers. The world class instruction available from teachers in the Philharmonic, schools and colleges, and private instructors is in large part responsible for this phenomenon.

Having great teachers is not enough, however. A musician must have the opportunity to hear and see performances of the highest caliber, on a regular basis. This is essential in order to form artistic standards, gain inspiration, and revel in the sheer joy that the arts offer. Here again, Buffalo shines. The more traveling the ASQ does, the more we appreciate the cultural treasures Buffalo has to offer. We have the magnificent Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Studio Arena, and Artpark. How many of us realize that the QRS Arts Foundation and Slee Beethoven String Quartet cycle are unique in this country? The Buffalo Chamber Music Society is the oldest organization of its kind in the United States. Buffalo is internationally recognized as a great center of new music, with many of our local performers much better known in Europe than at home. Such people as [an Williams, Yvar Mikashoff, and Lejaren Hiller immediately come to mind. Young Audiences of Western New York and the Western New York Institute for the Arts in Education are playing an important part in preparing youngsters for a lifetime of enjoying and understanding the arts. This list is a sampling of just some of the cultural riches of our area.

The economic pressures on a chamber music group are tremendous. Musicians cannot generally afford to stay together long enough to see their efforts blossom. In Buffalo, the cost of living is much more manageable than in other music centers such as New York, Los Angeles, and Boston. Add to that the fact that there is freelance work with the Buffalo Philharmonic, Artpark, show orchestras, and club dates, and you come up with the ability to survive the difficult early stages (the first 5 to 15 years) of a major chamber music career.

Finally, Buffalo, you have been a wonderful audience, which, after all, is what musicians need most. You attended over 200 of our local performances through the years. In fact, the "Amherst Saxophone Quartet Goes To Canisius College" series is the only annual saxophone quartet concert series in the world. As the ASQ continues to tour and build an international reputation we look forward to many years of living in, and enjoying this area.


The Amherst Saxophone Quartet

Amherst Saxophone Quartet Program Book: Letter from the ASQ