Stephen F. Austin State University

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Renowned saxophone duo to perform at SFA

September 17, 2014 - Robbie Goodrich
Left to right: Jeff Loeffert and Jonathan Nichol
NACOGDOCHES, Texas - The Stephen F. Austin State University College of Fine Arts, School of Music and the Cole Performing Arts Series will present Jeff Loeffert and Jonathan Nichol in a guest saxophone recital at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 25, in Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus.

Loeffort, assistant professor of saxophone at Oklahoma State University, and Nichol, assistant professor of saxophone at the University of Oklahoma, are active chamber musicians and members of the h2 Quartet, an award-winning, all-saxophone ensemble that performs throughout the U.S., Europe and Asia.

"This concert is a program of new solo and duo works for saxophone," said Nathan Nabb, professor of saxophone at SFA. "The h2/4 duo is half of the h2 Quartet, and some of this program includes music they have commissioned, while other pieces are established standards in the saxophone solo and duo repertoire."

According to the quartet's website, h2 is dedicated to commissioning and performing compelling new works for saxophone quartet and operates as a non-profit organization. h2 has been featured on the nationally syndicated PBS show "Backstage Pass," which offers viewers a first-hand look at the inner workings of a top-flight chamber ensemble through live in-studio performances and interviews with the ensemble members.

Among the works the duo will perform at SFA are "Tachycardia" and "Farfalle Cotte" by Marc Mellits.

"Mellits has become well-known for his duo writing for saxophone," Nabb said. "'Tachycardia' is his newest work for the instrument, while 'Farfalle Cotte' is originally for two ocarinas, but is well-suited for the sax."

Ryo Noda's "Maï," a standard in the contemporary saxophone world borrowing sounds and performance techniques from traditional Japanese flute playing, is also on the program, as are Barry Cockroft's "Ku Ku" and "Rock Us," both of which "borrow rhythms and tonality from American popular music, and are very catchy - a joy to hear," Nabb said.

Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit www.finearts.sfasu.edu.