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Department of Music to present saxophonist Adam Briggs

Nov 12, 2015

The Ohio Northern University Department of Music presents saxophonist Adam Briggs in the Snyder Recital Hall of Presser Hall on Monday, Nov. 16, at 8 p.m. The concert is free and open to the public.

Briggs’ program, “A Century in Paris,” is an original concert of music by French composers, spanning the time period from 1860-1960. The concert will include works by Jules Demersseman, Maurice Ravel, Camille Saint-Saëns, Olivier Messiaen and Paule Maurice. The program also will feature collaborative artist Yu-Lien The.

Briggs describes the program as such: “The saxophone has a rich and varied history in music. While it is more commonly known for its use in jazz, the roots of the saxophone stem from the classical world in mid-19th-century France. While there were a few compositions written specifically for the saxophone in its early years of existence, such as Demersseman’s ‘Fantasie sur une théme originale,’ transcriptions were also used quite frequently, and it seemed appropriate to program a few that show the depth of the saxophone’s adaptability. The works by Ravel, Saint-Saëns and Messiaen showcase the stylistic diversity and musical upheaval that occurred from the late 19th century through World War II. There are wide stylistic variations between the pieces, but they all provide moments of beautiful colors, which is very characteristic of all French music. It should be a fun and enjoyable concert that should connect with a diverse audience.”

Briggs, acclaimed as “a master of his instrument” by Fanfare Magazine, is an active classical soloist, chamber musician and jazz artist. He has concertized in the United States, Mexico and Canada, including most recently at the U.S. Navy Band International Saxophone Symposium and the North American Saxophone Alliance Conference. Briggs has given residencies and master classes at Interlochen Arts Camp and Brevard Music Center and throughout Maryland, Michigan and Arizona. Briggs serves as instructor of saxophone at Hope College and is the music director and co-founder of the Collective Behavior (CoBe) Chamber Music Series. He also has private studios in Lansing and Holland, Mich., and spends his summers performing at the Taneycomo Music Festival and teaching at Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp.

Briggs’ debut recording, “Transcension,” released on the Blue Griffin label, was described as “a must-own for anyone interested in saxophone playing at the highest level” by Fanfare Magazine. He previously was featured with the Catalina Saxophone Quartet on “America’s Millennium Tribute to Adolphe Sax: Volume XIV” performing Gavin Bryars’ “Alaric I or II.” He also appeared as a member of the Peabody Conservatory Wind Ensemble on its recordings of Johan de Meij’s Symphonies, released on the Naxos label.