About the Studio

West Texas A&M University is an excellent place to be if you are serious about further developing your saxophone abilities. The saxophone studio at WTAMU is friendly, enthusiastic, and supportive while maintaining a competitive environment that pushes everybody to grow and improve. Saxophone students devote themselves to practicing lesson materials and participate in a wide variety of ensembles within the School of Music. Whether you intend to pursue a career as an educator, performer, therapist, composer, administrator, or entrepreneur, your time at WTAMU will prepare you to be successful in your field.

In a typical semester, the studio consists of approximately 12 - 16 undergraduate students with an occasional graduate student.

If you are interested in learning more about saxophone studies at WTAMU or would like to set up a free trial lesson, please feel free to contact Dr. Barger for more information.

Lessons

All Saxophone majors receive lessons with Dr. Barger each week. Lesson materials are catered to the individual student and consist of fundamentals, technical exercises, etudes, and repertoire. Students are expected to perform throughout the semester for saxophone studio class, woodwind seminar, or studio recitals. Each semester, students will perform a scale exam and a repertoire jury for the woodwind faculty.

Studio Class

The saxophone studio meets once a week in a master class setting. Studio Class might consist of performance or pedagogical topics presented by Dr. Barger or student solo or chamber ensemble performances. Those who are not performing will be an audience and will provide constructive comments for the performers. Occasionally, students will be called upon to present short teachings of pedagogical topics.

Ensembles

WTAMU provides ample performance opportunities for saxophone students including Marching Band, Symphonic Band, Concert Band, University Band, Jazz Ensemble I and II, and Pep Band. Additionally, saxophone students have the opportunity to participate in saxophone quartets or saxophone choir.

Performance Opportunities

Saxophone students have weekly opportunities to perform for their peers in studio class and woodwind seminar. Studio Recitals are also scheduled each semester and these feature a variety of solo, chamber, and large saxophone ensemble performances. Guest Artist master classes are scheduled whenever possible and allow students to perform for other experts in the field. Saxophone students frequently compete in the annual concerto competition sponsored by the WTAMU Symphony Orchestra. Additionally, saxophone students have performed for competitions and conferences hosted by Texas Music Educators Association, North American Saxophone Alliance, Music Teachers National Association, and Vandoren.

Practice

Students are expected to devote a significant amount of time to practicing in addition to their ensemble rehearsals and lessons. The goal of an effective practice routine is to remove any technical difficulties from playing the saxophone so that the student can focus entirely on the musical aspects of performing repertoire. Each day, students should be spending time on Fundamentals (tone, voicing and flexibility, vibrato, articulation, and intonation), Technique (mechanisms, scales, arpeggios, intervals), Etudes (Ferling, Berbiguier, Lacour), and Repertoire.

Past Guest Artists

2021

Andrew Schoen
Sarah Hetrick
Sarah Dunbar
Tracy Patterson

2020

Adam Estes - canceled due to COVID-19
Jeff Antoniuk - canceled due to COVID-19

2019

Todd Yukumoto
Seyon Quartet
Bob Sheppard

2018

Aruna Quartet
Katisse Buckingham

2017

Christopher Creviston - WT Band Camp
Matt Tracy
Aruna Quartet
Mirasol Quartet
Jeff Coffin

2016

Sesha Wallace

2015

Mirasol Quartet
Bob Sheppard

2014

James Carter

2013

Matthew Sintchak
Jeff Coffin

2012

Wildy Zumwalt
Woody Witt

2008

Eugene Rousseau - WT Band Camp