Barry Cockcroft is your host on this podcast with interviews featuring guest saxophonists from around the world. In this show, he explores the stories behind these great musicians with telling insights into how they got started and the ongoing development of their careers. Discover the highlights of touring the musical world, unconventional ways to learn the saxophone, teaching styles from different countries and tips on maintaining a long and healthy career. The Barry Sax Show features a new guest each week and is supported by show notes, useful links and a full-text transcript of each episode.
An interview with renowned French saxophone Quartet, Quatuor Ellipsos with members Julien BRECHET, Nicolas HERROUET, Sylvain JARRY and Paul-Fathi LACOMBE.
Preston Duncan – Acclaimed American Saxophonist and Educator
A podcast interview with Preston Duncan, an American saxophone performer and educator and professor at the University of Minnesota.
YolanDa Brown - British Saxophonist and Broadcaster
An interview with British saxophonist and broadcaster, YolanDa Brown.
Jean-François Guay - Canadian Saxophonist and Professor
The Barry Sax Show
Jean‑François Guay studied at McGill University in Montreal and at the Conservatory of Bordeaux, France, where he received his gold medal under the direction of Jean‑Marie Londeix. He also holds a Masters in performance from Laval University in Quebec.
In 2000, Jean-François was the director of the 12th World Saxophone Congress held in Montreal, Canada. A specialist in contemporary music, Jean‑François Guay has commissioned numerous works for the saxophone.
He is currently a professor of saxophone at CÉGEP Marie‑Victorin in Montreal and the University of Montreal. Jean-François is the founding member of the Nelligan Saxophone Quartet which was formed in 1994 with the mandate to showcase the contemporary and classical repertoire for the saxophone.
Show Notes: Organising the 12th World Saxophone Congress. Fundraising for saxophone events. The silence after the intensity of a large event. Starting the Association des Saxophonistes du Québec. Bringing Canadian saxophonists together. Getting to know the world's saxophone players. Limited Canadian opportunities for saxophone and orchestra. Getting started playing the tuba. Learning with teachers Rémi Ménard, Abe Kestenberg and Jean-Marie Londeix. Having encouraging and critical teachers. Squeezing in practice around other activities. Learning to be efficient out of necessity. Thoughts on working from memory. Keeping fit for a long career. Recordings as a documentation process. The importance of living a rich life. Teaching at Cégep Marie-Victorin and the Université de Montréal. Working with great Canadian composers. The importance of playing good music. The Art of Fugue. The joy of being with people. Focussing on the task and not the risk. Always be over-prepared. Exciting new projects coming up. Being part of an orchestra but feeling apart. Having a fire inside of me!
Alain Crepin - Belgian Founder of The Adolphe Sax International Competition of Dinant
The Barry Sax Show
Alain Crepin, a many-sided musician, was born in 1954 in Mettet (Belgium). He is founder of the Adolphe Sax International Competition held in Dinant, Belgium and since 2005 has been president of the jury.
At first he studied saxophone, cello and piano in Dinant and later, he went to study the saxophone with François Daneels at the Royal Brussels Conservatory of Music.
For 21 years he was the musical director of the Royal Symphonic Band of the Belgian Air Force. King Albert II promoted Alain Crepin to the rank of major and later he was appointed the artistic director of all the bands of the Belgian Army.
He is professor of saxophone at the Royal Brussels Conservatory of Music and professor of orchestration and conducting at the Conservatory of Music of Esch-sur-Alzette (Grand Duchy of Luxemburg).
As a composer, Alain Crepin has written numerous works for symphonic band as well as many solo instrumental pieces with piano accompaniment. Many of these compositions have been recorded on CD and he is published in Belgium, France and The Netherlands.
As a soloist or conductor, he has recorded some 60 compact discs and performed all over the world.
Show Notes: The development of the Adolphe Sax International Competition. Helping young saxophone players. The town of Dinant, the birthplace of Adolphe Sax. Sponsors and funding for large events. To be good saxophonist, you have, at first, to be a good musician. Listening to over 500 candidates for a competition. Conducting the Belgian airforce bands. A typical teaching week in Brussels. If you don't have a great start, you will never be great. Being director of bands for the Belgian Airforce. Being prepared for anything at a concert. Keeping fit to help the saxophone playing. Recording 60 albums. The importance of playing in chamber ensembles. Loving the work that you do. The possibility of legacy in music. Working with Belgian composers. Keeping a positive frame of mind. Loving wine, music and friends. Thoughts on retirement and the future.
Debra Richtmeyer - American Saxophone Soloist, Professor and Author
The Barry Sax Show
Debra Richtmeyer, an internationally renowned saxophonist and pedagogue, has been Professor of Saxophone at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign since 1991 and has performed as a soloist and clinician in North America, Europe, Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Thailand and China. She has performed or recorded as a concerto soloist with numerous bands and orchestras, including the Dallas Symphony Orchestra, The Slovak Radio Orchestra, The Scottish Chamber Orchestra and the United States Navy Band. She was principal saxophonist with the Dallas Symphony Orchestra from 1981-1991 and with the St. Louis Symphony from 1992-2002. She is Past-President and Honorary Life Member of the North American Saxophone Alliance and an Artist/Clinician for Conn-Selmer Incorporated.
Debra has premiered commissioned works at eight World Saxophone Congresses and four North American Saxophone Alliance Conferences. In 1997 in Valencia, Spain she became the first woman to be invited to perform a concerto with orchestra at a World Saxophone Congress. In 2009 in Bangkok, Thailand, she became the first woman to be invited to give a master class at a World Saxophone Congress.
Prior to her appointment at the University of Illinois, Professor Richtmeyer was a saxophone professor at the University of North Texas and an instructor at Lawrence Conservatory. She received her degrees from Northwestern University where she was a Teaching Assistant and student of Dr Frederick L. Hemke.
Richtmeyer’s students and former students are leaders in the next generation of classical saxophonists and teachers.
Show Notes: Getting started on curved soprano in a family of musicians. Hearing Hemke perform live for the first time. Learning with my parents, Larry Combs and Fred Hemke. Learning to be my own artist. Helping students to teach themselves. Needing competition for motivation. Increasing the practice hours to develop a foundation. Decreasing the practice hours with a foundation. Teaching efficiency for students to increase their learning speed. Breaking down music to learn it fast through correct repetition. Listening from the heart. How to write a book. Advising the Committee on the Status of Women in the Saxophone. Building awareness of minorities in music. Being the first woman to perform a concerto and give a masterclass at a world saxophone congress. Making tough musical choices when life gets busy. Learning to say no. Working with composers. Keeping in touch with former students. The source of original interpretation. Using recordings without being overly influenced by them. Practising with artistic intention. Improvising at home. Effortless to make music sound better. Directing energy to an audience. Building endurance with breaks. Embracing the possibility of failure as a learning process by stepping outside your comfort zone.
Not just for sax players
I’ve always loved getting inside musician’s heads in regards to practice, performance and digesting a new piece....let alone an interviewer who lets the interviewee have the floor. Patient and fascinating pod cast.