Saxophonist shows us another side to his fine instrument
Ted Brankston treated an Oshawa audience to the pure, clean sound of the concert saxophone Thursday, but he had to win an apparent battle of nerves to do it.
Brankston, an Oshawa physician who has studied with Toronto's renowned Paul Brodie, appeared a bit nervous as he started his first recital at the McLaughlin Public Library auditorium. (Proceeds from the performance went to the Oshawa Symphony Association.)
During the first half of his two-hour show, Brankston was guilty of some technical errors - shaking his head in frustration - but still managed to blow with a clear, clean tone and well-supported vibrato in a program that featured material ranging from Gershwin to Rachmaninoff. Fellow Brodie student Bill Moolenbeek joined Brankston in a duet on Canonic Suite No. 1 by Telemann, while pianist George Brough furnished the accompaniment for the other four works in the set.
After the intermission however, appearing more comfortable, Brankston settled into the three-part Sonata by Poulenc, on soprano sax, and continued to gain confidence on alto in another duet with Moolenbeek and remaining selections with Brough. He displayed fine finger dexterity, breath control and tone quality on the Spanish Tango by Albeniz, a piece rearranged from guitar for saxophone, and in the final two works by Ravel and Glazounov.
The evening was a revealing one for those on hand, because the saxophone is most associated with concert band music or jazz. But Brankston, whas has summer plans to take part in a master class at Indiana University with Eugene Rousseau, a top U.S. classical player, proved that the instrument provides a totally different - and pleasant - listening experience applied to concert music.
To purchase Ted's debut CD
Want To Live" click HERE
"...one of the best classical saxophone
recordings I've ever heard!"
David Gibson, Editor
Saxophone Journal 2004