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History and Development of the Saxophone
Transcript of History and Development of the Saxophone
With these goals in mind, Adolphe began by making alterations to the bass clarinet. His combination of a clarinet mouth piece, single reed, woodwind keys, and conical brass body resulted in the creation of the world's first ever saxophone in 1841.
The first time that the saxophone was ever presented to anyone was when Adolphe approached a colleague of his, Hector Berlioz with his creation. Hector was impressed by the versatility of the instrument, and introduced the instrument to the public in his popular French journal, "Journal des debats".
Saxophones in Jazz
While a military band was stationed in New Orleans, the saxophone was introduced to the world of jazz. Once the potential of the saxophone was introduced into the genre by players such as Coleman Hawkins, the saxophone took over the jazz world.
Types of Saxophones
The most common saxophones are the bass, baritone, tenor, alto, and soprano sax. Adolphe Sax originally created multiple types of saxophones. His original idea was to have the lower saxophones-the bass, baritone, tenor, and alto-to be a force to add to his beloved French military bands. He also designed higher pitched saxophones for use in the orchestra-the tenor, alto, soprano, and sopranino.
Since its introduction into jazz, the saxophone has spread into many genres because of its versatility and unique color.
Adolphe's Goals for the Sax
Sax believed that the world of music was in need of some fine tuning, and decided that the way to do that was through the creation of a new instrument.
In 1864, Adolphe Sax did just that, and created the world's first ever saxophone.
Power of brass
Speed of a woodwind
Abilities of a stringed instrument
Balance and blend the parts in the orchestra
To become a key part in the orchestra
To become a staple of military bands
Though it was one of Adolphe's main purposes for creating the saxophone, the instrument never found a permanent spot in the orchestra. One of the main reasons that the saxophone never really began with the orchestra was because of Sax's bad relations with many who were prominent figures in the orchestral world at the time. Along with that, the original design for saxophone had a very difficult time with intonation. Though the instrument has evolved past it's intonation difficulties, it never fully settled into the orchestral world. One reason for this is because of how new the saxophone is to the music world. Much of the music played by orchestras was written before the invention of the saxophone.
Glazunoz Saxophone Concerto Op.109
Even though the saxophone doesn't hold a permanent spot in the traditional orchestra, there have are many orchestral pieces in which saxophone is featured, and are considered to be some of the most important in the classical world.
John Mackey Sop. Sax Concerto
One of the most well known and popular ways that saxophone fits into classical music, is through its chamber ensembles. Saxophone ensembles may range from trios or quartets, to saxophone choirs of about a dozen players.
Fugue in G Minor J.S. Bach
Duvvuri , Sidharth. (2012). A History of the Saxophone and its Multiple Iterations. . Retrieved 12 October, 2013, from http://courses.physics.illinois.edu/phys193/Student_Reports/Fall12/Sidharth_Duvvuri_P193_POM_Final_Report_Fa12.pdf.
School of Music, Bloomingdale. (2010). Instruments in Depth-The Saxophone. . Retrieved 12 October, 2013, from http://www.bsmny.org/exploring-music/features/iid/saxophone/2.php.
Adam, K. (2011, August 27). The saxophone and adolphe joseph sax. Retrieved from http://factsofun.wordpress.com/2011/08/27/the-saxophone-and-adolphe-joseph-sax/
Hanston, A. (2012, July 07). Saxophone history. Retrieved from http://www.hansonsaxophones.com/Hanson_Saxophones_Making_Music_in_Great_Britain/Saxophone_history.html
Adolphe sax. (2012, December 30). Retrieved from http://www.asbier.be/en/adolphe-sax/
Rail, N. (2013, March). Adolphe sax alto saxophone. Retrieved from http://www.nickrailmusic.com/t-adolphesax.aspx
-2 years old: He fell out of a 2nd story window and fractured his skull.
-6 years old: Accidently drank boric acid.
-9 years old: Fell off a small cliff and broke his leg.
-11 years old: Got the measles and was in a coma for 9 days.
-14 years old: Broke his arm by getting it caught in a carriage door.
-19 years old: Hit in the head by a falling brick.
-23 years old: Almost died from tainted wine.
Kenny G holds the record for longest sustained note on a saxophone-45 minutes!
-Born Antoine Joseph Adolphe Sax
-Nov. 6 1814 - Feb. 7 1894
-Dinant, Belgium - Paris, France
-Son of Charles Joseph Sax
-Studied flute and clarinet at the Brussels Conservatory
After being approved by Berlioz, Sax took his newly created instrument and moved to Paris to present his new instrument to the public. Adolphe's new instrument was known as the bass horn until it was introduced as "le saxophon" in a French magazine later that year, giving it the name that has stuck with it thus far.
Naming of the Saxophone
Though Adolphe didn't actually invent the instrument, it was named after him because of his large improvement to the saxhorn family.
Saxophones in Military Bands
After Sax's intial attempt to introduce the saxophone into the world of music through the orchestra, he decided to put that part of the saxophone's future on hold and present his instrument to the French military bands in hope that they would see the different colors and force that the saxophone could bring. The French latched on to the saxophone, immediately integrating it into their bands. The saxophone spread across Europe from there, engaging many other military bands and spreading its publicity during its travel with the French.