Sumner Truax

Sumner Truax joined the faculty of the Lawrence University Saxophone Studio in the fall of 2015. A virtuoso performer and a masterful teacher, Mr. Truax is committed to performing the music of our time.  A frequent collaborator with composers, Mr. Truax has brought to life new works for solo saxophone and saxophone quartet.  He has worked closely with French composer Christian Lauba, a collaboration that resulted in the concert etude entitled "Bebop," a work dedicated to, and premiered by, Sumner Truax. As alto saxophonist with the Lux Quartet, Mr. Truax has commissioned and premiered several works by young composers.

A versatile classical and jazz musician, Mr. Truax has performed with the Lux and East End saxophone quartets, the Eastman Saxophone Project, Love Constellation and the Stars, Fatbook, and various large and small jazz ensembles. Twice a winner of Wisconsin Public Radio's Neale-Silva Young Artist Competition, Mr. Truax has performed live on two concerts on WPR.  With the Lux Quartet, he was a winner of the Lawrence Symphony Orchestra Concerto Competition and a Downbeat Student Music Award.

Mr. Truax earned his Master of Music degree in saxophone performance and literature and a certificate in Arts Leadership at the Eastman School of Music. At Eastman, he served as a teaching assistant to Dr. Chien-Kwan Lin. Mr. Truax also holds a Bachelor of Music degree in saxophone performance and instrumental/general music education from Lawrence University. He has also served as a program advisor at the New York Jazz Academy and maintains a private studio of saxophone, flute, and clarinet students.

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Watch Sumner Truax and Kurt Eric Galván perform William Bolcom's Lillith for alto saxophone and piano.

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Listen to Sumner Truax perform Colin Labadie's Strata I for solo tenor saxophone

Steven Jordheim

Steven Jordheim, Professor of Music, was a winner of two major international performance competitions: the International Competition for Musical Performers in Geneva, Switzerland in 1983 and the Concert Artists Guild International Competition in New York in 1984. He presented his New York debut recital at Carnegie Recital Hall in 1985 and has performed as a recitalist and soloist with orchestras in Italy, China, Switzerland, France, Canada, Taiwan, and the United States. Jordheim holds degrees in music performance from Northwestern University and the University of North Dakota and has studied with Frederick Hemke and Jean-Marie Londeix.

Since joining the faculty of the Conservatory of Music at Lawrence University in 1981, Jordheim has taught courses in saxophone, chamber music, music education, instrumental pedagogy, and Freshman Studies. In 2012, Jordheim received the Freshman Studies Teaching Award, and he was awarded the Lawrence University Award for Excellence in Teaching in 2001. He has been an artist-teacher of saxophone at the Xi'an Conservatory of Music in China, the International Saxophone Chamber Music Festival in Faenza, Italy, the Hsing Tien Kong Festival in Taiwan, and the National Music Camp at Interlochen, Michigan.  He has served as adjudicator for the Concert Artists Guild International Competition, the North American Saxophone Alliance Classical Saxophone Performance Competitions, the Music Teachers National Association regional and national competitions, and the Hsing Tien Kong Competition in Taiwan.  Steven Jordheim's recording of David Maslanka's Song Book for alto saxophone and marimba, and Sonata for alto saxophone and piano is available on compact disc on the Albany Records label.  His performance as conductor of Rodney Rogers’ Two Views for saxophone ensemble, percussion, piano, and double bass with the Lawrence University Saxophone Ensemble is available on the Albany Records label, and his performance of James Chaudoir’s Pentragrams was released on the Capstone label.

Works composed for Steven Jordheim include:

The Valley of Fire for saxophone quartet and organ -- William Albright
We Fall . . . We Rise for saxophone ensemble -- Javier Arau
Duo Concertante for saxophone and piano -- Leslie Bassett
Consilience for saxophone quartet -- Philippe Bodin
Ballade for saxophone and chamber orchestra -- Michael Halstenson
Trio for flute, saxophone, and piano -- Michael Halstenson
Songbook for alto saxophone and marimba -- David Maslanka
Light (con una luce superna) -- Joanne Metcalf
Dialogue Symphonique for saxophone and chamber orchestra -- Lucie Robert
The Nature of this Whirling Wheel for saxophone and piano -- Rodney Rogers
Two Views for Saxophone Ensemble, Percussion, Piano, and Double Bass -- Rodney Rogers
Hydra for saxophone quartet -- Kenneth Schaphorst

Jordheim’s research interests include endoscopic study of the vocal tract in standard and extended saxophone techniques.

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José Encarnación

José L. Encarnación, Assistant Professor of Music and Director of Jazz Studies, leads the jazz improvisation classes, coaches jazz small groups, teaches applied jazz saxophone, and coordinates the jazz performance program at the Lawrence University Conservatory of Music. He studied saxophone, flute and clarinet at the Free School of Music in San Juan, Puerto Rico, completed his Bachelor of Music degree at the Berklee College of Music in Boston where he graduated magna cum laude, and received his Master of Music degree from the Eastman School of Music (including the 2002 Schirmer Prize in Jazz Performance). He previously served as Assistant Professor of Jazz Saxophone at the Eastman School of Music, Instructor of Saxophone, Latin Jazz Performance Workshop, and Youth Saxology for the Eastman Community School, and as Jazz Ensemble Conductor at the Rochester (NY) School of the Arts.

He has performed jazz, salsa, and Latin music with the Bob Mintzer Big Band, the Dave Rivello Ensemble, Gilberto Santarosa, Roberto Rohena, Bobby Valentin, Domingo Quinones, Israel “Cachao" Lopez, Tito Puente, Danilo Perez, Dave Valentin, Giovanni Hidalgo, Batacumbele, Humberto Ramirez, and David Sanchez. His pops performances include appearances with the Temptations, Dianne Reeves, Natalie Cole, Doc Severinsen, Lou Rawls, New York Voices, Brasilia, Ann Hampton Calloway, and the symphony orchestras of Milwaukee, Rochester, and Green Bay.

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Watch José Encarnación play "This Thing" with the Lawrence Faculty Jazz Quartet:YouTube VideoYouTube VideoPlay YouTube Video


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