Through performance and a brief history, Dwyer illuminates the cultural and sonic impacts the saxophone had on modern culture. The saxophone craze of the 19th and 20th centuries influenced monumental shifts in global culture: mass industry, portable gramophones, radio broadcasts, women’s suffrage, Prohibition, and two world wars. How have marginalized groups, such as women and African Americans used the saxophone to express themselves and influence the cultural landscape? How can we use the example of the saxophone to examine cultural biases, stereotypes, and group knowledge? Dwyer explores modern history from the perspective of the saxophone, a 170-year-old instrument that has been adored, banned, and held responsible for significant changes in popular culture.
Dylan Dwyer is a musician and educator with over 15 years’ experience teaching music and working with students and adults of all ages. He is a jazz saxophonist with a master’s degree in performance from the University of Montana. He currently teaches instrumental music at Loyola Sacred Heart high school in Missoula, Montana.