Ian Seiderman, Tenor Sax and Cello
Dear Dr. Zurcher,
I am really pleased that you made contact with me via Facebook. I tend not to frequent Facebook, but these kinds of contacts are one of the more positive uses of the site.
I think this is our first interface since I was an awkward adolescent blowing ever so tentatively into a tenor saxophone in the 1970s. However, my mother has told me that she used to meet you at teacher union meetings in subsequent years.
There are just a few teachers from my formative years to whom I feel I owe a debt of gratitude, and you are certainly one of them. Although in 1976 I did not know Charlie Parker from Charlie Christian, I am sure that first taste of active jazz led to my becoming the passionate jazz fan I am today. When I lived in New York during the 1980s and 90s, I think I went to an average of two live jazz shows per week and amassed a decent sized vinyl collection, which I still listen to in this iPod age (As I write to you, I have the Max Roach double quartet spinning on the turntable). I live in Geneva, Switzerland now and do catch some shows here as well.
Also, I very much appreciated your innovative teaching methods and that you promoted real improvisation amongst your students, the foundations of jazz and not simply dry reading of charts, which was standard in most schools at that time (and may still be for all I know).
My professional work as an international human rights lawyer brought me to Geneva, where I work for an international NGO. Although I discontinued playing the saxophone after high school, I continued on and off with Cello. I play in a very good orchestra in Geneva (combination of decent level non-professionals like me and aspiring young professionals). If you can read French, here is our website: www.symph.ch
It would nice to hear what you have been up to all of these years. Thanks again for making contact.
Best wishes, Ian