Dale Wolford



Dahl Concerto

Once again, I’m slow to update this blog! But I just wanted to say how much I enjoyed performing the Ingolf Dahl Saxophone Concerto with the SJSU Wind Ensemble under the direction off Dr. Edward Harris last night at SJSU. It seems I perform this monumental work about once a decade and each time is more fun than the last. It continues to grow on me as for the great work it is in the musical repertoire.

Dr. Harris’ program notes included a “fun” quote from Igor Stravinsky in a discussion Dahl had as he began to write the concerto, “ I don’t know, to me a saxophone always sounds like a pink slimy worm.” Thankfully Dahl didn’t listen to his teacher and the piece was premiered on May 17, 1949 (my birthday!)

The premiere performance was a much longer work than the pared down version we did last night at SJSU after Dahl revised it in 1954. You can read a history of the revisions in Paul Cohen’s insightful analysis.

For those of you interested, here is one of my favorite recordings:

Now I’m off to practice for the upcoming SF Ballet “Chroma” rehearsals/performances!