Fantasy for Saxophone Quartet

A four-movement work still currently in progress, Fantasy for Saxophone Quartet is a piece that has gone through more changes over the course of its composition than almost any other piece I have ever composed. Each movement is meant to be representative of both a self-contained story, as well as an individual part of a loose overarching narrative that forms a cohesive “fantasy.” The first movement, Twisted Steps, is a frantic, claustrophobic romp of a musical motif through a variety of timbral arcs that morph it in very minute ways over time. As the musical settings around the theme jerk and shift, a second, more open and legato theme is introduced to counter the short, quick and confined characteristics of the A-theme. As the music progresses, it begins to slowly, and sometimes spontaneously, widen its range further and further until its conclusion. The second movement, Tower of Mist, takes the silence left after the bombastic conclusion of the first movement and breaks it slowly and cautiously, with the performers making almost no sound, entirely without pitch, before gradually creating a tonal center for the piece to rest in. This movement employs the use of looping, and so as the performers are slowly added in over time, they begin to subtly multiply, eventually creating a texture that grows not through volume, but by density. The loops will waver in and out of the texture, varying by performance, until fading away to reveal a chorale centered around the B-theme of the previous movement. As the players lead the piece to its conclusion, the finality remains nebulous until all sound completely ceases.


  • For saxophone quartet
  • Category: Chamber Ensemble
  • Year Composed: 2022
  • Duration: 13'-14'


  • 12 JUN 2021
  • Fantasy for Saxophone Quartet (I: Twisted Steps) - UCLA End of Quarter Showcase
  • UCLA (Livestream)
  • Los Angeles, CA
  • Alex Lee, soprano sax; Joshua Park, alto sax; O'Connor Langi, tenor sax; Emma Mooradian, baritone sax