Declared “an ensemble to watch for years to come” by the American Record Guide, the award-winning h2 quartet has been wowing audiences since 2002. A dynamic and innovative chamber ensemble, h2 constantly seeks to defy perceptions and expectations of the saxophone. h2 takes advantage of the great expressive capacity of their instrument by programming traditional, avant-garde, minimalist, and jazz-influenced works in surprising and compelling ways. h2 has performed throughout the United States, and has performed in Europe, the UK and in Asia. The ensemble has presented recitals at venues such as the Walt Disney Hall (Los Angeles), the National Concert Hall (Dublin), the Guarnerius Arts Center (Belgrade), the Cankarjev dom (Ljubljana) and the Times Center and Merkin Hall in New York City.
The group is also in demand for appearances and residencies at summer music festivals both at home and abroad, including the Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp in Michigan and the Cortona Sessions for New Music in Italy. The h2 quartet also hosts the Great Plains Saxophone Workshop in Oklahoma during the summer months. The ensemble has released six critically-acclaimed recordings: Generations, Times & Spaces, Groove Machine, Hard Line, Enrapture, and Soul Searching. Each of these albums introduces audiences to a different side of the saxophone, with the latter four comfortably bridging the gap between the popular and avant-garde sides of American music. The h2 quartet has been featured on NPR and PBS programs, including the nationally-syndicated Backstage Pass, which offers viewers a first-hand look at the inner workings of music groups through in-studio performances and ensemble interviews. Their recording of Groove Canon by Marc Mellits was featured as the monologue theme music for the Broadway show The Heidi Chronicles, starring Elisabeth Moss (Mad Men) and Jason Biggs (Orange is the New Black). h2 is dedicated to commissioning and performing compelling new works for saxophone quartet, and operates as a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization.
The h2 quartet has won prizes at the Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition (First Prize, Gold Medals) and the North American Saxophone Alliance Saxophone Quartet Competition (First Prize), among others. The group has also been named finalists in the Concert Artists Guild Competition, and has earned Honorable Mentions at the Plowman Chamber Music Competition, the Chesapeake Bay Chamber Music Competition, and the Coleman Chamber Music Competition. The group was also a recipient of an Aaron Copland Fund Recording Grant in 2010 for their album Times & Spaces. The h2 quartet is a Vandoren and Yamaha Artist Ensemble.
Programme (h2 quartet)
Takuma Itoh: Echolocation
Zechariah Goh: Homage
Takuma Itoh: Sunburnt
David Biedenbender: You’ve Been Talking in Your Sleep
Programme (h2/4 Duo)
Marc Mellits: Farfalle Cotte
Augusta Read Thomas: Jeu d’Esprit
François Rossé: Ximix
Jeffery Loeffert: Bombinate
Geoffrey Deibel, soprano saxophone
Takuma Itoh: Neon Flicker
Marc Mellits: Tachycardia
Takuma Itoh: Early Bird Special
Guillaume Connesson: Disco Toccata