Saxophone quartet with over 25 years of experience to bring wide repertoire of music to ASU this week

Members say Capitol Quartet's concerts at ASU will have audiences questioning their perception of music

ASU faculty member Christopher Creviston, along with the other three members of the musical group Capitol Quartet, will be embarking on a journey through classical and avant garde music at their concert on Wednesday.

Capitol Quartet is a musical ensemble consisting of four saxophone professors hailing from universities all over the country. Creviston is the associate professor of saxophone at ASU and plays soprano saxophone in the quartet. The alto saxophone is played by Joseph Lulloff, who is the professor of saxophone at Michigan State University. David Stambler, tenor saxophonist of the quartet, is the associate professor of saxophone at Penn State University. The final member of the quartet is Henning Schröder. He is the baritone saxophonist of Capitol Quartet and is the assistant professor of saxophone at Ohio Northern University.

The group was created in 1991 and has had an impressive run since its inception 25 years ago. Creviston said the reason the men formed a quartet was because playing chamber music is crucial to a musician's career. He also said producing music as a quartet is a great experience because the friendship and musical bonds that are formed cannot be found when working as a soloist.

“We are hanging out with our closest friends, and we’re doing our work in a much more intimate situation, but there’s still a relationship and a musical bond that happens,” Creviston said. “You get to make a musical statement together as a group, as a unit and as a team. It’s a very different thing than playing by yourself, which is wonderful as well. We all do solo concerts ourselves, but playing chamber music is really important.”

At their concert on Wednesday, audiences will get to see the quartet in action. Creviston said the audience can expect to hear an array of musical styles.

“We’re playing everything from some beautiful string quartet music to some jazz to some incredibly avant garde, crazy music that will probably challenge some people’s definitions of what is music,” he said. “There’s going to be a lot of that. We’re also playing an octet with Arizona State University students, and that particular piece is a barn burner — it’s very exciting.”

The quartet travels around the country to perform for audiences. While it can be hard to coordinate schedules, Capitol Quartet has put on over 50 concerts per year.

David Stambler said one of the most rewarding parts about being in Capitol Quartet and putting on all these performances is the chance to express themselves as musicians.

“The best thing about performing in a quartet is that each member of the quartet has an absolutely crucial role to play during every moment of music,” Stambler said. “And along with that responsibility goes an enormous opportunity for expression both individually and as a group.”

Quartet members said as they play for audiences this weekend, they not only want to express themselves, but they also want to experience personal growth. Joe Lulloff said that he is looking forward to the opportunity to grow as a musician and a person during the concert.

“I think one of the great things in chamber music of any kind is that you get a chance to collaborate musically with some of the best musicians that you know, and you get to learn and enhance your own musical skills,” Lulloff said. “When I’m playing with these guys, that’s what I really take away. I feel like I am a better player and a better person, too, because great chamber music playing is synonymous with great communication and great learning.”

Capitol Quartet will be having its own concert at the Recital Hall on the Tempe campus on Wednesday Nov. 16 from 7:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. Tickets and more information can be found on the ASU events page.

For those who cannot attend their performance on Wednesday, Capitol Quartet will also be performing at ASU on Friday Nov. 18 as a part of the Prisms Contemporary Music Festival. More information can be found here.


Reach the reporter at kzgaskin@asu.edu or follow @kiya_gaskin on Twitter.

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