Not just the oddball


Paige Rauschuber admits that the saxophone is sometimes considered to be the “oddball” of instruments.

The saxophone is one of the more recently invented instruments and is not often seen in orchestral music.

Even in concert band, saxophonists have to do transcriptions, or write their parts from other instruments. But, slowly, the saxophone is becoming more accepted in the orchestra community.

Junior music education major Paige Rauschuber, however, was drawn to the instrument right away.

Rauschuber began playing the saxophone in third grade.

Her mother tried to push her to play the flute, but Rauschuber knew what she wanted.

Soon, she was playing a cheap $100 saxophone in a small Catholic school in Louisiana.

“We’re not seen as the loud, obnoxious instrument,” Rauschuber said. “We can blend.”

To prove this, Rauschuber’s goal is to teach general elementary music because of the experience she had in her own elementary programs.

Rauschuber wants to pursue this type of career because she knows how vital it is to receive a good music education as a child.

“It brings you back to where you can be a kid again,” Rauschuber said. “They have so much fun in the process, they don’t even realize that they are learning.

Rauschuber said she feels like her experience at Butler has helped turn her into a performer.

She does not just play notes and rhythms.

“That’s something that I have really discovered this year,” she said. “My professor really makes a point of the phrase – where it’s going, what emotion it evokes. Definitely an area in which I have grown this year is actually feeling something whenever I play and trying to express it through my instrument.”

Rauschuber’s improvised piece may have all the notes written out with dynamics, but at the top of the piece it says, “at your leisure,” which makes it easy for her to play around and to take the piece wherever she wants. Although the piece is not technically improvised, there is an improvisation element where the performer can set whatever mood she feels like.

The Arthur Jordan Saxophone Quartet also plays along with Rauschuber on her recital.

Jacob Bullock, also a junior music education major, is involved in the quartet.

“I have enjoyed working with Paige in our quartet this year,” Bullock said. “We play the two lower parts, and it is so important for the bass end of the ensemble to lock together well so the upper voices can play with confidence and precision.”

Rauschuber feels people would enjoy the different types of music they will find at her recital.

They would be able to witness improvisation and more standardized music, as well as her quartet music, showcasing a more Latin-inspired feel.

“It’s not all just ‘boring’ classical music that people think of,” Rauschuber said. “There are different elements to it.”

Paige Rauschuber’s recital is March 5 at 7:30 p.m. in Eidson-Duckwall Recital Hall.

Photo courtesy of Paige Rauschuber


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