THE ORQUESTRA DE SAXOFONES PORTUGUESA

The Orquestra Portuguesa de Saxofones 

The Orquestra de Saxofones Portuguesa da ESMAE (Escola Superior de Música e das Artes do Espectáculo) from Porto, Portugal, was founded in the summer of 1998 by Henk van Twillert in co-operation with the Amsterdam Saxophone Quartet. At the same time, there was the start of the saxophone class at the Escola Superior in Porto with Fernando Valente

Henk van Twillert now is professor of Saxophone and artistic director of the saxophone orchestra at ESMAE. The orchestra consists of students of Henk van Twillert and his assistants Fernando Ramos and Gilberto Bernardes. The orchestra is conducted now by Filipe Fonseca.The Repertoire of the orchestra is comprehensive: from 'classical' original compositions and arrangements for this setting (Gabrielli, Brahms, Mendelsohn, Berlioz, Milhaud, Tomasi, dubois) to various Dutch compositions (like Ketting, Meijering, Van Dijk, Dijkhuizen) to specially written pieces. Most of the arrangements have been made by saxophonists in co-operation with the ensemble.

The Orquestra de Saxofones Portuguesa gives numerous concerts throughout Portugal. They played at the International Festival of Aveiro and the International Clarinet Meeting in Porto. At the International Music Festival of Feira the orchestra played the Preludium for 12 Saxophones by Otto Ketting.

In 1999 the orchestra made a tour in Holland. They gave various concerts and masterclasses. Highlight of the tour was the final concert in the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, were they played the worldpremiére of Concert for Bass Clarinet and Saxophone Orchestra by Gijs van Dijk with the Dutch bass clarinet player Harry Sparnaay 

The Orchestra, conducted by Filipe Fonseca, will be present in the Pamela Saxophone Festival 2009

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