Maslanka Weekly: Best of the Web – No. 115, New Uploads of Sonata for Alto Saxophone and Piano

Maslanka Weekly highlights excellent performances of David Maslanka’s music from around the web.

Strongly influenced by music of the past – Franz Liszt, Francis Poulenc, Allan Pettersson – the Sonata for Alto Saxophone and Piano alternates between an innocent stroll in the park, and a fierce breaking of tonal and formal boundaries. The three movements are personal adaptations of old forms – the first a sonata, the second an ABA song form, and the third a rondo. Each movement has a turbulent, eruptive quality that takes this music away from its historical models and makes it very much a music of our time. The Sonata has become a standard piece in the saxophone repertoire.

This week, we feature three new uploads of the Sonata for Alto Saxophone and Piano.

Sonata for Alto Saxophone and Piano

From David’s Program Note:

The Sonata was commissioned by the North American Saxophone alliance for its 1989 convention. It is in three large movements. The first is lyrical and reflective, with sudden energetic bursts. The song-like and soulful second movement is a broad soliloquy with its roots in the expressive madrigal style of the sixteenth century. The third is a large rondo that is at times fierce, mournful, playful, and turbulent, and at the end, ethereal.

Watch below as Timothy Owen, Saxophone and the late Marilyn Olson, Piano perform Movement II.

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Watch below as Mark Zelesky performs Movement I. with his own orchestration of the piano score. Orchestration includes Electronic Piano, Garklein Recorder, Sopranino Recorder, Soprano Recorder, Alto Recorder, Bass Recorder, Piccolo Clarinet, Eb Clarinet, Bb Clarinet, Alto Clarinet, Bass Clarinet, Contrabass Clarinet, Mini-Bassoon, Soprano Saxophone, Alto Saxophone, and Baritone Saxophone.

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Watch below as Liu En Ming performs Movements I and II.

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We would love to hear from you! If you know of any outstanding performances of David Maslanka’s music on the web, please email us at

By |2020-09-01T01:07:29+00:001 September 2020|Featured, Maslanka Weekly, Sonata for Alto Saxophone and Piano|