Manhattan Saxophone Quartet was first formed in 2008 as an ambitious and promising studio ensemble at Manhattan School of Music; the foursome’s current membership coalesced in 2010 with the goal of creating a freestanding professional quartet committed to the highest artistic standards of performance of saxophone quartet music, both established and experimental, and to the exposure and introduction of saxophone quartet repertoire to new audiences of all ages. With their various musical passions in classical, jazz, theater, and contemporary music, MSQ embodies a diverse canon spanning nearly 150 years, from early original works by Romantic masters to innovative compositions by 21st century contemporary artists.
Composer David Froom has remarked that MSQ plays "with both precision and passion, and always with terrific musicianship!" and composer David Noon has lauded "I am continually inspired, in truth, by [the] quartet's artistry." MSQ has performed across the northeastern United States at venues including Bruno Walter Auditorium at Lincoln Center, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Leonard Nimoy Thalia Theater at Symphony Space, Citigroup Center, Yale University, Messiah College, Rutgers University, College of New Jersey, New York University, International Saxophone Symposia, and West Point University for the annual North American Saxophone Alliance regional conference. The quartet has premiered works by Marc-Antonio Consoli, Robert McMahan, David Noon, Jeffrey Nytch, Quinn Collins, J. Mark Stambaugh, and Rex Isenberg, among others.
Manhattan Saxophone Quartet musicians are Jordan Smith, soprano saxophonist; Andrew Steinberg, alto saxophonist; Daniel Kochersberger, tenor saxophonist; and Jay Rattman, baritone saxophonist.
Dr. Jordan P. Smith is a New York-based saxophonist and conductor. He completed his D.M.A. at Mason Gross School of the Arts, Rutgers University, where he studied with Dr. Paul Cohen. He holds an M.M. degree in Saxophone Performance from Manhattan School of Music and a B.M. in Music Education from The College of New Jersey, where he studied with Kathleen Mitchell. He has completed additional studies with Dr. John Sampen, Ken Radnofsky, Jean-Michel Goury, and the Rascher Saxophone Quartet.
He has concertized extensively throughout the United States and internationally in Austria, the Czech. Republic, and Greece as a soloist, conductor, chamber, and orchestral musician, and has recently performed with the New World Symphony, Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia, Bravura Philharmonic, Sifodec Orchestra, MSM Orchestra, Brooklyn College Orchestra, the Hartwick College Wind Ensemble, and the French Woods Orchestra. As an orchestral wind player Mr. Smith has performed under such conductors as Michael Tilson Thomas, Robert Spano, Barbara Leifer, H. Robert Reynolds, and Eugene Corporon.
Recent performance venues have included Haydn Hall in Eisenstadt, Austria, Carnegie Hall's Stern Auditorium, Lincoln Center's Bruno Walter Auditorium, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Knight Concert Hall at the Adrienne Arsht Center in Miami, Symphony Space in NYC, Yamaha Concert Hall in New York City, Richardson Auditorium at Princeton University, St. Peters Citigroup Center in New York City, the Professional Children's School, Princeton University, Yale University, Eisenhower Hall at West Point, and the 2011 International Saxophone Symposium. Jordan was winner of the 2006-2007 TCNJ Concerto Competition, performing Tomasi's Ballade for Saxophone and Orchestra with The College of New Jersey Orchestra. He recently performed Alfreed Reed’s Ballade for alto saxophone and concert band with the Hartwick College Wind Ensemble, and Concertante for alto saxophone and wind ensemble with the YOCJ Wind Symphony.
As a chamber musician in New York City and strong advocate for new music, Jordan has premiered twenty-two works by composers such as Mark Stambaugh, Marilyn Shrude, David Noon, Hayes Biggs, Marc-Antonio Consoli, James Adler, Robert McMahan, Steve Cohen, Rex Isenberg, Tamara Cashour, Adrienne Albert, Remy Le Boeuf, Ayanna Witter-Johnson and Matthew Hough. Upcoming premieres include a duo work One Final Gyre for the Epoch Duo by Alex Burtzos, and a work for saxophone ensemble called Supra by Jonathon Russell. He is also a member of the Manhattan Saxophone Quartet, which has premiered and commissioned ten works in the past three years, culminating in a recent sold out performance at Lincoln Center’s Bruno Walter Auditorium in 2012 and a return performance in 2014 to celebrate Adolph Sax’s 200th birthday.
Jordan is the conductor for the saxophone choir and saxophone ensemble of Youth Orchestra of Central Jersey, the only program of its kind in the United States. He is also on the saxophone faculty for the Mason Gross School of the Arts Extension Division, in addition to maintaining a large private studio in Princeton, NJ, and teaching music history at Georgian Court University in Lakewood, NJ. Dr. Smith was recently published in the 2013-14 edition of the journal, the Saxophone Symposium for his research on Jules Massenet, and the 2011 January/February issue of the "Saxophone Journal" in an article about Prokofiev's Lieutenant Kijé Suite and can be heard on CD on Ravello, Carrier, and Navona Records.
Andrew Steinberg is a New York City based saxophonist, performing throughout the country. As a current graduate student at the Manhattan School of Music, as well as a recent graduate from Rutgers University, he has won solo and chamber competitions performing works as diverse as the "Concerto for Saxophone" by Henry Brant to the "Quartet" Op. 22 by Anton Webern, in addition to premiering new works written expressly for him. While pursuing his studies in solo, chamber, and orchestral performance, Andrew has been invited to the Verbier, Round Top, Spoleto, and Schleswig-Holstein Music Festivals, among others. His teachers have included Paul Cohen and Frank Amato, in addition to lessons with James Houlik, Ronald Caravan, Patrick Meighan, Chien-Kwan Lin, and John Moore.
As a performer, Andrew has worked with world-renown musicians including Leonard Slatkin, Jerry Junkin, Pascal Verrot, Mark Scatterday, John Kennedy, Kraig Williams, Joshua Gersen, Alan Kay, Steve Cohen, Kynan Johns, Samuel Hazo, Ed Lisk, Phil Smith, and Joe Alessi, among others. He has also attended workshops and master classes with Claude Delangle, Chien-Kwan Lin, the Rascher Saxophone Quartet, Patrick Meighan, Kim Laskowski, Jeff Scott, Sato Moughalian, David Krakauer, Monica Ellis, and Paquito D'Rivera. These performances have taken him to venues such as Carnegie Hall, NJPAC, Dock Street Theatre, the International Ballroom at the Hilton Chicago, Eisenhower Hall at West Point, the Warwick Hotel, the Dimenna Center, Round Top Festival Concert Hall, the Kupferberg Center, and the Yamaha Piano Salon. In addition, Andrew has traveled throughout the country to perform at various festivals including the Imani Winds Chamber Music Festival, the Midwest Band Clinic, the Music for All Festival, the Trio Bel Canto Workshop, the West Point NASA Conference, and the Eastman Saxophone Institute. This summer Andrew has traveled to Texas to perform Rachmaninoff's "Symphonic Dances" at the Round Top Festival Institute, as well as South Carolina, for Spoleto Festival USA, taking part in the US Premiere of Michael Nyman's opera "Facing Goya". Later this summer, Andrew will perform the full film score to Leonard Bernstein's "West Side Story".at the Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival in Germany as a member of the Festival Orchestra.
On top of his work as a soloist and an orchestral musician, Andrew is actively involved in chamber music, winning both the Lillian Fuchs and Mason Gross Chamber Music Competitions. Throughout the last few concert seasons, Andrew gave multiple performances of chamber works utilizing the saxophone, which included the premiere of a new work by Erich Stem, the premiere of Steve Cohen's "Quintet for Alto Saxophone and Strings," a handful of performances of Henry Brant's "Concerto," as well as Charles Ives's "Scherzo: Over the Pavements," which previously had no documented performances using a saxophone. Most recently, Andrew took part in the North American premiere of Michael Nyman's "Something Connected with Energy" for large chamber ensemble, which will be released on CD later this year.
Andrew is currently the saxophone instructor at RMC Studios in Garwood, NJ, as well as at Third Street Music School Settlement in NY, NY.
Dan Kochersberger - Tenor Saxophone
Daniel Kochersberger, originally from Canandaigua, New York, is a saxophonist active in the New York contemporary music scene. In addition to orchestral appearances with the New World Symphony,
Mansfield Symphony and the Oberlin Orchestra, Daniel has performed as a soloist, recitalist and chamber player with the Contemporary Music Ensemble of Oberlin, the Chamber Winds Ensemble of Manhattan, the Manhattan Wind Symphony, and Brooklyn based ensemble: Symphony Z. He is the tenor saxophonist of the Manhattan Saxophone Quartet. Daniel received his B.M. from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music and his M.M. from the Manhattan School of Music, where he studied with Dr. Paul Cohen.
Jay Rattman - Baritone Saxophone
Jay Rattman, 26, originally from Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania maintains an active schedule as a freelance woodwind artist, creative musician, composer and arranger in and around New York City.
At an early age he was mentored by saxophone greats Phil Woods and David Liebman. He received bachelor’s degree in three years in addition to a master’s degree from Manhattan School of Music where he studied with Dick Oatts, Steve Slagle, Steve Wilson, Joe Temperley, David Krakauer and John Riley.
He has performed in venues as varied as Jazz @ Lincoln Center, The Blue Note, Carnegie Hall, Town Hall, The Coachella Festival, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Bruno Walter Auditorium at Lincoln Center, Smalls Jazz Club, Cornelia Street Café, the Mercury Lounge, the Bitter End, and numerous jazz venues in Pennsylvania including the Deer Head Inn and the Celebration of the Arts (COTA) jazz festival. He has also appeared on NPR’s Sound of Young America, The Late Show, and The Tonight Show.
In demand in a variety of musical settings as diverse as traditional jazz, klezmer, big band, free improvisation, creative jazz, and classical chamber music, Jay has performed with musicians as drastically varied as Bob Dorough, Feist, Nellie McKay, and the José Limón Dance Company. He can be heard playing bass clarinet on vibraphonist Stefon Harris’s Grammy-nominated CD, “Urbanus.” Rattman is a member of the klezmer band “Zlek” and Phil Woods’s Festival Orchestra, besides leading his own quartet, which plays members’ original music. A champion of new music, he has premiered pieces as a member of the Manhattan Saxophone Quartet by David Noon, Marc-Antonio Consoli, Jeffrey Nytch, Robert Young McMahan, Inhyun Kim, and Rex Isenberg among others. His talents have been recognized by the NFAA ARTS awards and the ASCAP Young Jazz Composer Awards.
As an educator, Rattman maintains an active private studio in addition to having taught group instrumental lessons in New York City public schools, at COTA Camp Jazz, and via distance learning from Manhattan School of Music. He also presented in a teaching artists masterclass with Yo Yo Ma and his Silk Road Ensemble.