New Thread Quartet

Fifteen Minutes of Fame: New Thread Quartet

Founded in 2011, New Thread Quartet is committed to the creation and performance of saxophone quartet repertoire from New York’s burgeoning new music scene. Members of the ensemble are active as composers, performers, educators and industry professionals within the five boroughs, and share the goal of commissioning, and working closely with, New York City composers to develop impactful new works for the saxophone.

Now in its fourth season, New Thread has performed for a wide range of audiences and venues within the five boroughs, including Dance Theatre of Harlem, Bronx Community College, D’Addario Chelsea/Collective School, Dimmena Center's NYsoundCircuit, Con Vivo’s Mercado Park Concert Series (Jersey City), South Oxford Space, Firehouse Space, JACK (Brooklyn), and Flushing Library in Queens.

The quartet has toured widely in the US and abroad, performing at the 2012 NAVY Band Symposium in Fairfax, Virginia, the NASA Biennial Conference at Arizona State University, New England Conservatory’s Jordan Hall and internationally at the World Saxophone Congress in St. Andrews, Scotland. This spring, New Thread will perform at the University of Illinois and will premiere Erin Rogers' piece Mother Earth for flute and saxophone quartet, at Weill Hall, Carnegie Hall, with support from a JFund grant.

Nearly all works programmed by New Thread have been written for the group by New York-based composers. Commissions and collaborations include composers Richard Carrick, Anthony Gatto, Gilbert Galindo, Miguel Bolivar, Kati Agocs, Roberto Kalb, Marcelo Lazcano, Michael Djupstrom, Paul Pinto, Erin Rogers, Ben Hjertmann, Pat Muchmore and Luke Schwartz.

Geoffrey Landman is a New York City based performer, teacher, and advocate of the saxophone and new music. He has collaborated with ensembles such as Either/Or, Talea Ensemble, Boston Modern Orchestra Project, Argento New Music Project, and is a founding member and soprano chair of the New Thread Quartet.

Geoffrey has worked with composers such as Bernhard Lang, Christian Lauba, and Philippe Leroux among others. Geoffrey holds degrees from the University of Michigan (BM), University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music (MM), Post-graduate work at the Musik-Akademie der Stadt Basel in Switzerland, and is currently working toward his Doctoral degree at the New England Conservatory as the first DMA candidate for saxophone performance in the school’s history.

Currently residing in NYC, saxophonist, Kristen McKeon, is thrilled to be a member of the D’Addario & Company’s Woodwind Division—working as a Woodwind Product Specialist, Artist Relations Manager, and Product Development Advisor. Appearances include performances at the Navy Band Saxophone Symposium, several North American Saxophone Alliance Biennial Conferences, and the 2012 World Saxophone Conference in St. Andrews, Scotland. Kristen has enjoyed opportunities to be billed on several concert series and festivals including Carmel Music Society's Summer Subscription Series, thingNY’s Seven Immediacies Series, the New England Conservatory Composers' Series, and the Composers Now Festival in NYC.

An experienced clinician, Kristen travels throughout the U.S. giving talks on instrument accessories manufacturing for D’Addario Woodwinds, careers in music, and effective methods for collaboration with the music industry. Kristen is also a founding member of New Thread Quartet (New York, NY). New Thread Quartet is committed to the creation and performance of new music.

Erin Rogers is a Canadian saxophonist and composer based in New York City. Her works have been premiered by performers such as the Gotham Ensemble, Colin Davin, Miranda Cuckson, and the Warszynski Trio, as well as Chicago’s Anubis Quartet and Madrid’s Tribuna Sax-Ensemble. She has performed with ensembles such as IKTUS, Lost Dog Ensemble and Fireworks and is a founding member of performance groups thingNY and the New Thread Quartet. Erin completed undergraduate studies at the University of Alberta and received Masters Degrees in composition and performance from Bowling Green State University. Visit for more information.

Saxophonist Zach Herchen performs music ranging from classical trios to jazz tone poems, multimedia works, afrobeat, and beyond. He is a 2013 Bang on a Can Summer Festival Fellow, has worked on staff at New England Conservatory’s Summer Institute for Contemporary Performance Practice, and has performed as a soloist in Italy, Sweden, Germany, and at various American institutions. Zach holds M.M. and B.M. degrees from The Peabody Conservatory.

Concert Dates

  • January 11, 2015 - Jan Hus Church in New York City

Composer selected for this Fifteen Minutes of Fame

Concert program
  • Synthetic Fog

    Lauren Buscemi

    Lauren Buscemi is currently pursuing a B.S. in Music with a concentration in composition from Adelphi University. During her undergraduate studies her roots as a songwriter transformed into an exploration of contemporary classical music composition. She plans to continue studying composition while also finding new ways to implement music into the lives of others.

    “Synthetic Fog” gets its inspiration from Ken Kesey’s 1962 novel One Flew Over The Cuckoos Nest. The piece attempts to musically depict the physical “fog” as well as the mental “fog” that is persistently surrounding the patients. They believe this “fog” is medicinally infused in order to keep them confused and controlled.

  • I Took the A Train

    Masatora Goya

    Masatora Goya is a composer writing extensively in the areas of chamber music and theater. Trained as a vocal performer first, he explores the musical landscape of drama, space, and emotion.

    The A train has a long ride, from Inwood to Far Rockaway. Other lines join one by one and separate their ways one after another. After I came to NY, it didn't take long for me to realize it isn't exactly a swinging kind of a ride.

  • VRI

    Hanan Hadzajlic

    Hanan Hadzajlic (1991, Slovenia) lives in Bosnia and Herzegovina since 2005. She is student of Flute (with professor Sakib Lacevic) and Music composition (with professor Aliser Sijaric) at Music Academy in Sarajevo (Bosnia and Herzegovina). She attended several flute masterclasses with many different proffesors, the most influential of which were with Eva Furrer, Boris Previsic, Ljubisa Jovanovic, Dejan Gavric and she also attended composition masterclasses with Heiner Goebbels and Phillipe Manoury. Hanan sucsessfully participated many regional and international competitions and won many awards. She is member of ensemble for contemporary music AMAS and she also cooperates with SONEMUS ensemble. She is focused especially on interpretation of contemporary music, and as composer, she works on developing contemporary flute techniques and didgeridoo techniques inside of her individual composition style .

  • Scatter!

    Dillon Henry

    Dillon Henry (b. 1988) holds degrees in composition from Carnegie Mellon University (BFA) and the University of Michigan (MM), and has studied with Michael Daugherty, Kristin Kuster, Nancy Galbraith, and Reza Vali. He will begin his DMA studies this Fall at the University of Missouri – Kansas City.

    Scatter! is a jocular, rhythmic piece, punctuated by staccato blips which send fluid runs and arpeggios reeling and careening. Tension builds to a brief climax of shrill, altissimo wailing, but the piece quickly collapses back into a final, gasping version of its opening gestures.

  • homonym

    Emily Koh

    Emily is a young composer of contemporary classical music based in Boston MA. She is currently the Director of Concert Series at the Boston New Music Initiative and a Ph.D. candidate in Music Composition and Theory at Brandeis University.

    homonym noun \ hä-m - nim\ ˈ ə ˌ definition: one of two or more words spelled and pronounced alike but different in meaning.​

  • Movement #001

    Kaori Nakano

    Kaori Nakano is a piano teacher of Yamaha Popular Music School in Japan, jazz pianist, arranger and composer. The SEMI-Finalists of International Songwriting Competition 2011(Jazz category), Black House Saxophone Quartet Competition Winners (2013).

    This is the morning small scenery by sound. Chirping of a little bird, silence, and the engine sound to pass. Please enjoy irregular meter and an irregular motion.

  • Darvaze

    Paolo Pecin

    Paolo Pecin, Italian composer, graduated in Milan with Gabriele Manca and attended various mastercalsses by composers such as Billone, Stroppa, Lanza, Lopez Lopez, Holliger, Morales Ossio, etc. Is active in the diffusion of contemporary music also as a performer: piano player and conductor.

    Darvaze, a perpetually burning natural gas field located in Turkmenistan, is also a Persian word meaning “gate”. In this piece, in fact, I wanted to concentrate on the idea of passage, on “threshold” sounds: the slow appearance of multiphonics, the air-sounds gradually becoming pitches and so on.

  • Fading glares

    Silvia Pepe

    Born in 1988. Graduated at Milan Conservatory (Piano,Organ, Composition Master degree-summa cum laude). She studied with G. Manca and attended masterclasses with a.o. Billone, Lanza, Stroppa, Filidei. Her music has been performed in/by a.o. Teatro DalVerme, Milan Auditorium (La Verdi Orchestra) San Fedele Auditorium, (Divertimento Ensemble), Festivals: Milanomusica, OperaBarga (Contempoartensemble – Inaudita) Festival Gesualdo2013(1st prize Sincronie-CEMAT), Silence Acusmatic Festival 2014, Art and Science Festival (Bourges, Tours, Orleans), Sirga Festival (Ensemble interface).

    This miniature explores a “cross fading” process between timbre and density. Sounds - considered like light sources with different color gradations (from darker to lighter) – in their articulated superpositions, form a unic light leak: an hyper-sound that is a composite reflection of the Alto sax part.

  • Shigurekana (Winter Rain)

    Richard Pressley

    Richard Pressley teaches at Charleston Southern University, South Carolina, and has enjoyed performances in the U.S., Europe, Brazil, Australia. He attended Butler University, Cambridge, the University of Minnesota, with post-doctoral study in Germany. Instructors include Wolfgang Rihm, Sandeep Bhagwati, Dominick Argento, Judith Zaimont, Alex Lubet, Daniel Chua, Michael Schelle.

    Withered lotuses The pond wretched Winter rain -- Yosa Buson (1716-1784) (translation R. Pressley)

  • Ronroneo

    Juan Maria Solare

    Juan Maria Solare, born 1966 in Argentina, works currently in Germany as composer, pianist (contemporary & tango) and teaching at the University of Bremen and at the Hochschule fuer Kuenste Bremen. His music has been performed in five continents. Thirteen CDs of different performers include at least one piece of him.

    "Ronroneo" (spanish) is the sound that cats use to do when feeling satisfied, namely "to purr". Well, cats, but also humans under certain conditions.

  • Menyan

    Ivan Tangkulung

    Ivan Tangkulung is a composer, and pianist whose work includes both classical and commercial worlds. He has written for both Eastern and Western Ensemble in Singapore, where he is currently residing. He is also actively writing for musicals and film music. He is currently studying under Mr. Chong Kee Yong.

    “Menyan” means incense in Indonesian. Incense symbolizes various things in different religions. I try to evoke the haziness of the smoke of incense through chromatic harmony and various extended technique such as air sound. The melody that is heard symbolizes the prayers that rose to heaven.

  • The Conception of Chaos

    Maxwell Tfirn

    Maxwell Tfirn is a third year PhD at the University of Virginia in Composition and Computer Technology. He enjoys studying noise, timbre and spectralmorphology. He is currently working with Dr. Ted Coffee and has worked with Anthony Braxton, Dr. Matthew Burtner, Dr. Paula Matthusen, Dr James Sain and Ronald Kuivila.

    The Conception of Chaos attempts to show the conception of chaos through an environment that is steady. Chaos does not just appear, but transforms out of the lack of order. In this composition chaos is brought through multiphonics with high partials and aggressive slap tonging.

  • 1267

    Keane Southard

    Keane Southard (b. 1987) writes music that is an amalgamation of his many diverse musical influences, from medieval chant to 70's rock, Bach to the Blues, and German romanticism to Latin dance forms. Keane spent 2013 in Brazil as a Fulbright scholar doing research on music education.

    1267 Notes for Saxophone Quartet was written in late December of 2013. The piece lasts exactly one minute long at the specified tempo, yet consists of 1267 notes, for a rate of more than 21 notes per second.

  • Dramma breve

    Luca Vanneschi

    Luca Vanneschi’s music was awarded prizes in more than twenty International competitions and it has been performed by some of the more qualified musicians all over the world. Hans Werner Henze said about his music: “… it is an intelligent, non conformist, elegant and full of grace music.”

    The constructive technique of Dramma breve moves the structural elements from different angle-shots. The score constitutes a continuous effort of balance among low and dark sounds and more ethereal ones, among a dense and impending sound tissue and the brilliance of unreal timbres and abstract harmonies.

  • Threads

    Blair Whittington

    Blair Whittington is a Los Angeles based composer who concentrates mainly on chamber and orchestral music. He studied composition with Byong-kon Kim and has worked for 19 years as music librarian at the Brand Library & Art Center in Glendale, California.

    This gentle mysterious piece is full of undulating melodic lines and is designed to take advantage of the beautiful balance of a saxophone quartet.