Calefax celebrates 30th anniversary on US Tour

15 April 2016 — 23 April 2016

From April 15 until April 23, the Dutch “reed quintet” Calefax will conduct an American Tour. Celebrating their 30th anniversary as a collective, the group travels to venues on both the East and West coast of the United States.  

Calefax is a source of inspiration to a fresh generation of reed players, as they are the creators of a completely new genre: the reed quintet. The group consists of five passionate wind players, who are virtuoso musicians, as well as brilliant arrangers.

The repertoire of Calefax spans many centuries of music. They breathe new life into classical chamber music by arranging it themselves to fit their own unique reed quintet line-up: oboe, clarinet, saxophone, bass clarinet and bassoon. Next to that, approximately two hundred original works have by now been written especially for Calefax by composers from all over the world. During their many travels and collaborations, they have drawn influences from world music, jazz and improvisation.

In short: Calefax is a classical ensemble with a pop mentality.

The group publishes sheet music of their own arrangements for reed quintet under the name “Calefax Edition,” so that they play a pioneering role and put this new genre on the map. All over the world new reed quintets are springing up, following Calefax’ example; from Argentine to New-Zealand and from the United States to Europe. By offering master classes and workshops at conservatories and universities, Calefax passes its specific methods and musical experience on to the next generations.

Calefax has to date released 17 CDs, under the renowned German record label MDG and under their own label RIOJA Records. 

Tour dates

Friday April 15, 8:00 PM  
Sunset Cultural Center –  Carmel, Ca

Saturday April 16, 2:30 PM
Margaret Lesher Theatre – Walnut Creek, CA

Sunday April 17, 3:00 PM
Morrison Chamber Music Centre – San Francisco, CA

Monday April 18, 7:30 PM
Oshman Family JCC – Palo Alto, CA

Friday April 22, 8:00 PM
Armstrong Concert Hall – Winchester, VA

Saturday April 23, 8:00 PM
Market Square Presbyterian Church – Harrisburg, PA

About Calefax

Four boys from a school orchestra in Amsterdam, saxophone players Raaf Hekkema and Lucas Helsdingen, bassoonist Alban Wesly and oboist Eduard Wesley, decided to found a wind quartet in 1985.  Bold as they are, they asked Willem van Manen to write a piece for them. To their surprise, in the summer of 1985, the composer told the boys that the piece is finished. Kapteijns says farewell to Calefax soon after the first concert and after some personnel changes on the clarinet, Ivar Berix joins the quintet in 1987. With the oboe, clarinet, saxophone, bass clarinet and bassoon, the current instrumentation is found. In 1994, after some changes of the bass clarinet stand, Jelte Althuis joins the quintet and oboist Oliver Boekhoorn started in 1997. This is the current occupation of Calefax.