Program Book 2001-2002 page 18
ASQ Group Biography


The Amherst Saxophone Quartet is a full time professional ensemble that splits its time between touring and its residency at the University at Buffalo and in Buffalo & Erie County.

The ASQ was formed in January of 1978 and is now celebrating its twenty-fourth full season of concert performances. The ensemble has performed in the United States from Maine to Hawaii, Japan, Bermuda, and the British Virgin Islands. Concert highlights include performances in Carnegie Hall, Kennedy Center, Lincoln Center, Chautauqua Institution, radio broadcasts on National Public Radio's All Things Considered and Performance Today, Public Radio International's St. Paul Sunday, and television appearances on CBS Sunday Morning and NBC-TV's Tonight Show.

The ASQ was awarded Chamber Music America Residency Grants for the 1985-86 through 1987-88 seasons. The Ensemble received the 1993 First Prize for Adventuresome Programming from CMA/ ASCAP, and has been awarded commissioning prizes from CMA, NYSCA, and the NEA. The Board of the Quartet sponsored an international composition competition and received over 120 new works from around the world.

The ASQ's newest CD is a recording of music by Renaissance master [osquin Desprez. The CD was made possible by a grant from Hodgson Russ, LLP. In addition to this recording, the ASQ has recorded five albums for Innova Records, MCA Records, Musical Heritage Society, and Mark Records. These include three recordings of new American music, an all-Bach album, an all-Eubie Blake disc, and a collaboration with Lukas Foss. New World Records will release a new ASQ CD in July of 2002. In 1997 the ensemble released a video tape introducing children to chamber music, called ASQKids, believed to be the first video of its kind. The Amherst Quartet has been a performing member of Young Audiences of WNY since 1979. The group also worked with young persons' programs at the Kennedy Center (Washington, DC), Lincoln Center (New York, NY), Aesthetic Education Institute (Rochester, NY), and Arts in Education (Buffalo, NY). As the Quartet travels, it performs many short term residencies in conjunction with its concert performances. The members of the ASQ are clinicians for the Selmer Company and Vandoren Reed Products.

The ASQ's long term goals include maintaining a permanent repertory ensemble of the highest international caliber and encouraging composers to write for saxophone quartet to create a 21st century repertory that compares to that of the contemporary string quartet.

Amherst Saxophone Quartet Program Book ASQ Biography