The Victoria-based Sobremesa Saxophone Quartet is partnering with St. John Anglican Church to present an energetic and diverse evening of classical saxophone quartet music on Feb. 20.
Though the saxophone is commonly associated with many great jazz performers, its history precedes the genre and is a beautiful and versatile member of the orchestral family.
Formed in 2017 at the University of Victoria, the Sobremesa Saxophone Quartet is a multi-award winning ensemble that promotes conversation through music.
The Spanish term “Sobremesa” directly translates to “over the table” and more commonly refers to the time spent in conversation with people after having shared a meal together.
In both 2018 and 2019, Sobremesa was awarded first place in the Greater Victoria Performing Arts Festival for chamber music, and went on to receive first and second place at the Performing Arts BC Festival for the corresponding years. In Victoria, the quartet is often invited to partake in various concert series and on-campus performances. Likewise, the group even had the distinct privilege of being asked to provide music for the thousands attending UVic’s Fall Convocation ceremonies.
Each of the young accomplished musicians in their own right, the members of the Sobremesa bring unique backgrounds and traits that they share to the table. one baritone, Karsten Brewka, who was born and raised in Victoria, brings a mature yet vibrant approach to his performances. On tenor, Todd Morgan, originally from St. Catherine’s, brings an aptitude for listening and sharing to the group. On alto, Matt Fichter, originally from Kamloops, brings passion and a depth of character to each performance. On soprano, Rocky Point PEI local Connor Stairs is highly adaptable to new situations and is appreciated for his lyricism.
The concert is titled “Mountain Roads” after American composer David Maslanka’s 1997 piece. Blending newer-and older musical styles, “Mountain Roads” embarks on a sonic journey that is inspired by rugged mountain ranges and a quasi-spiritual form of beauty. Alongside this, the group will be presenting a wide range of music from different eras that demonstrates the saxophone’s ability to sing.
This concert will feature works by Piazzolla, Bach, Dvorak and others.
The show is Thursday, Feb. 20 at St. John Anglican Church (46098 Higginson Rd.) and runs from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. with a reception to follow. Doors will open at 6:30 p.m.
Admission is by donation (suggested $10 to $20).