Artists

Zach PfauMissoula native Zachary Pfau currently lives in Paris where he studies musicology at the University of Paris IV (the Sorbonne) and maintains a small private studio. In 2008 as a US Fulbright scholar, he began graduate studies with the French saxophonist Jean-Michel Goury at the Boulogne-Billancourt Conservatory. Before his studies in France, Zachary was a student of Dr. Frederick L. Hemke at Northwestern University, where he graduated with honors in 2008 with degrees in saxophone performance (B. Mus.) and French (B.A., M.A.). That same year, as a founding member of the award-winning Amethyst Saxophone Quartet, Zachary earned first prizes at the Music Teachers National Association Collegiate Chamber Music Competition (Denver,CO), the Coleman Chamber Ensemble Competition, and the famed Fischoff International Chamber Music Competition (Notre Dame, IN).

In 2010 Zachary successfully passed the French national teaching certification exams administered by the Ministry of Culture, permitting him to work in the French public conservatory system. In July Zachary will be competing in the 3rd International Jean-Marie Londeix Saxophone Competition in Bangkok, Thailand.

Brooke Florence earned her B.A. from the University of Montana in Saxophone Performance (1988) and completed her M.A. at Northwestern (1989). She studied under Roger McDonald and Dr. Frederick Hemke. Dr. Hemke continues to be a strong influence in her life, both personally and musically. In 1994 Brooke competed at The First International Saxophone Competition of Adolphe Sax in Dinant, Belgium. She founded and directed the Montana Saxophone Festival from 1996 through 1999. She worked closely with many fine saxophonists, including Gregory Yasinitsky, John Sampen, and her mentor Frederick Hemke. In 1998 she was a recipient of a Montana Arts Council Fellowship Award.

Brooke maintains a saxophone studio in Missoula, MT and also works with students in area band camps and through festival adjudications. She has served as a visiting instructor at the University of Montana. She and her husband Chuck Florence like to chase around their dog Zoot when they are not mentoring aspiring Missoula saxophonists.

Christopher HahnChristopher Hahn has been featured in recital at Carnegie Hall—Weill Recital Hall, The Music Gallery in Toronto, the Methow Valley Chamber Music Festival, the National Saxophone Conference at Northwestern, the International Horn Competition of America, and the Society of Composers. As a collaborative artist, he won the silver medal at the 2008 International Chamber Music Ensemble Competition in Boston, and was a winner of Canada’s NUMUS Chamber Music Competition for New Music. He has had the honor of performing for the Archbishop Desmond Tutu with the Metropolitan Opera’s Leona Mitchell, and has also performed with such recognized artists as flutist Christina Jennings, trumpet/piano virtuoso Guy Few, pianist Lydia Brown, cellist Amit Peled, and Russian dissident poet Evgeny Yevtushenko. A native of Canada, Christopher is presently an associate professor of piano at the University of Montana where he teaches piano, piano pedagogy, accompanying, and serves as the artistic director of the UM Contemporary Chamber Players.

Barbara Blegen was born in Missoula. At age three she showed evidence of unusual musical gifts, picking out tunes at the keyboard. Her first first formal training, at six, was in Missoula with Mrs. Staley. In 1951, she began eight years of study with Prof. J. George Hummel of The University of Montana in Missoula. Barbara Blegen has performed in concerts throughout the U.S., in Europe, and in Canada as a recital soloist, as an accompanist, as a collaborator in chamber music concerts, and as a soloist with orchestras. Her work as a Community Concert Artist under Columbia Artists Management, Inc. has been highly acclaimed: "a feast of sound and musical values, of brilliance," "scintillating," "matchless," "impeccable brilliance." She played on “The Tonight Show” with her sister Judith, who was also making waves in the opera world and would become a major star of the Metropolitan Opera. She recorded and toured all across the United States in solo recitals, and accompanied some of the world’s finest musicians.