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New Music for Alto and Soprano Saxophone

James Cunningham, Glen Gillis, Richard Gillis, David Kaplan, Barbara York

GLEN GILLIS, alto and soprano saxophone
Bonnie Nicholson, Piano
Richard Gillis, Trumpet
James Cunningham, Didgeridoo

World Premiere Recordings



"Glen Gillis boasts a clear and penetrating sound, a wide dynamic range, and a great command of many styles, including jazz, world music, and contemporary techniques. He is a naturally expressive player, and his collaborators support him with their full artistic commitment... The program has something for everyone...Gillis is fearless with his fingers, and it pays off."
Hanudel, American Record Guide - May / June 2010
"Glenn Gillis is a master of his instrument..."
[ * * * * ] BBC Music Magazine - May 2010
"If you have so far resisted the charms of the alto and soprano saxophone, and generally enjoy a laid-back frame of mind, this programme of world premiere recordings could change your mind. [Gilles plays the Carnival of Venice variations] suavely, with wry humor and splendid vituosity. The lovely, liquid and clear"
Laurence Vittes, Gramophone - April 2010
"Glen Gillis accomplished soloist with an abundance of virtuosity... The supporting musicians are all fine players as well. I especially enjoyed Bonnie Nicholson’s colorful and sensitive piano work... The recorded sound is fine."
Merlin Patterson, Fanfare - March / April 2010
SAXSPECTRUM 1 is a collection of diverse new music for alto and soprano saxophone. All compositions were commissioned, written for, or written by Glen Gillis to further promote the saxophone and the work of Canadian composers.

Glen Gillis, Associate Professor of Music, is Director of Bands and Saxophone, Conducting, and Music Education Instructor at the University of Saskatchewan. Apart from his reputation as a teacher and conductor, Dr. Gillis is a Conn-Selmer Artist and Clinician, and continues to maintain an active schedule in saxophone performance. As a member of SOCAN (Society of Composers, Authors, and Music Publishers of Canada), his diverse performance career and musical experience has spanned over three decades in the realms of classical and jazz. Recently he was a guest artist at Florida Atlantic University where he recorded with James Cunningham on Hoot/ Wisdom Recordings: didgeridoo.diversions.

Dr. Gillis has performed at numerous World Saxophone Congresses and North American Saxophone Alliance National and Regional Conferences. Since his tenure at the University of Saskatchewan he has recorded for CBC Radio, guest performed and lectured in Canada and the United States, and has regularly presented recitals for the Department of Music In Performance Convo Series. In the last fifteen years Dr. Gillis has commissioned nine works for classical saxophone and has collaborated with many artist musicians, conductors, and composers. He has matriculated many saxophone students at the high school and college level who have received provincial and national awards. Dr. Gillis has given numerous clinics at high schools and colleges throughout his career and has also served as an artist-in-residence at The Banff Centre in Alberta on four occasions.

As an original member of the Saskatoon Saxophone Quartet, he leads the ensemble that performs for special functions and conferences. He has contributed articles on the subjects of saxophone pedagogy, wind conducting, and music education to the Canadian Music Educator, Canadian Winds, and The Encyclopedia of Music in Canada. His published compositions for saxophone include: Elegy, Elegy Cadenza, Nicole’s Aria, and Nicole’s Gigue (Eighth Note Publications). Co-composed works include Aurora Borealis, Didgeriblu, Hujan Panas, and Sonata for Saxophone and Didgeridoo (James E. Cunningham Publishing, BMI). His self-published compositions for saxophone include: Impromptu, Le Carnaval de Venise, Meta-Morphi III, and To Quote Myself.

In 2001, Dr. Gillis returned to Canada after a ten-year residence in the United  States where he was Director of Bands and Saxophone Instructor at Cameron University in Lawton, Oklahoma for five years, three of which he served as guest conductor of the Lawton Philharmonic Orchestra. Previous to that he was Assistant Director of Bands and Saxophone Instructor at the University of Missouri-Columbia, and adjunct faculty member at Central Methodist College in Fayette, Missouri. Prior to his tenure in the United States, he served as a lecturer at the University of Saskatchewan and taught instrumental music for eleven years in the Saskatoon Public School Division. Currently at the U of S, Dr. Gillis also conducts the Wind Orchestra and several chamber ensembles, including several saxophone ensembles. Within the rigorous performance schedule of the Wind Orchestra, the ensemble annually tours, such as their 2006 Texas tour with performances at the University of North Texas in Denton and the TMEA Conference in San Antonio. Under his direction, the Wind Orchestra has also released three commercial CDs: Winds of the Prairie: A Celebration, Lilium: A Celebration, and most recently, Innovare: A Celebration.

Dr. Gillis earned a Bachelor of Music in Music Education degree from the University of Saskatchewan, a Master of Music degree from Northwestern University, and a Ph.D. from the University of Missouri-Columbia. [ ]


Glen Gillis

Barbara York

Richard Gillis

David Kaplan
IMAGES (2008)

James Cunningham / Glen Gillis

J. Demersseman (ed. F.Hemke / G.Gillis)

MSR Classics
New Music for Alto and Soprano Saxophone GLEN GILLIS