PRISM Quartet

General Programs

Member of the PRISM Quartet serve on the faculties of the nation’s leading universities, including the University of Michigan, Northwestern University, the University of Missouri – Kansas City, and Temple University. They bring decades of pedagogical experience to the PRISM Quartet’s residency work, covering everything from coaching, master classes, composition instruction and outreach programming to entrepreneurship and audio recording seminars.

Teaching / Coaching

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Saxophone Masterclasses: coaching and personalized instruction in a public forum for saxophone soloists and quartets. Open to all music students.

Chamber Music Coaching: exploration and critique of chamber music performances for all instrumentalists within the music department/school. Open to any chamber ensembles, including all wind groups (brass quintets, woodwind quintets, wind trios, piano with winds, and saxophone quartets).

Lecture/Demonstration: “Strategies for Successful Chamber Music Experiences”: handouts and performance demonstrations intended to teach more effective methods for rehearsing and performing. Open to all instrumentalists.

Open Rehearsals: Opportunities for students to observe PRISM in action!

Private Lessons: Each member of PRISM is available for one-on-one instruction with all levels of saxophone students.
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Educational Outreach Programs

PRISM residency at Free Library

Outreach activity (Elementary through HS), includes performances for school assemblies, band programs, or individual classes, as well as lecture-demonstrations that include discussions of composers/historical periods, an introduction to basic instrument construction and sound production, and a Q & A session.

 

Performances: Musical Collaborations

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PRISM is available for a multitude of musical partnerships within the institution, highlighting repertoire for saxophone quartet with orchestra, concert band, choir, percussion ensemble, and other chamber configurations.

 

Composition

Composition for Kids: Elementary school kids work with PRISM over multiple sessions to transcribe a collection of saxophone sounds into written symbols, and use those symbols to create graphic scores of their own music compositions. Students team up with the Quartet to develop performances of their works.

Unlocking Your Inner Composer: Adults and teens work with PRISM in a single 90-minute session to create their own works for saxophone quartet using graphic notation (described above).

Composers Forum: Session for composers in which PRISM discusses writing for the saxophone; includes demonstrations of pre-existing works that show a range of approaches, use of various extended techniques, idiomatic practices, etc.

Composer Readings: University music students write short pieces specifically for PRISM. PRISM provides feedback, from use of notation to content and development of composition.

 

Recording and Technology

This session is designed for college students studying audio engineering and related technologies, and performance majors interested in acquiring knowledge about the recording process. The session addresses a wide range of production and post-production techniques, including equipment selection; mic placement; recording session protocols and the role of the producer; and editing, mixing, and mastering using industry standard platforms, plug-ins, and external processors.

 

Business and Entrepreneurship Seminars

Starting Your Own Record Label: From Concept to Album: The PRISM Quartet self-produces recordings for its own label, XAS Records, distributed worldwide by Naxos. This session covers everything from developing thematic recording concepts to artwork/design, distribution, and PR/marketing strategies. The session also addresses the role of the executive producer and fundraising for recording projects.

Establishing an Artistic Identity in a Crowded Field: This session focuses on the development of a unique artistic identity as a means of distinguishing oneself in the music profession. It includes a discussion of performance practice and composition, programming and concert curation, branding through design and image, language, and more.

Running a Non-Profit Chamber Ensemble: PRISM discusses the process of organizing and maintaining a non-profit organization, including day-to-day business operations, strategic planning, resource/audience/board development, and distribution of administrative work within the organization. The presentation also examines strategies to ensure the longevity of an ensemble.

Producing Your Own Concert Series: PRISM presents strategies for instituting and managing a self-produced concert series. Topics: curating programs (including commissioning new works), artistic collaborations, marketing/audience development, public relations, and institutional partnerships.