Faculty Recital: Brian Levy, jazz saxophone

NEC: Jordan Hall | Directions

290 Huntington Ave.
Boston, MA
United States

Great artists give free concerts at New England Conservatory—simply because they teach here.

This is an in-person event with a private stream available to the NEC community here: https://necmusic.edu/live


A note from Brian Levy

I am dedicating this performance to Jennifer Lin Levy, my dancing star, my guiding light through this chaotic world.


Tonight’s concert is something of a farewell to the NEC community. Starting next year, I’ll be the Director of Jazz Studies at San Diego State University. Thank you for being here, as I am honored to share this music with you in this magnificent space.

I also want to thank my colleagues at NEC, particularly those in Jazz Studies and Music History. It has been an honor and great inspiration to work and collaborate with you for the past ten years.

Thank you, President Andrea Kalyn and Provost Ben Sosland, for your generous support in making this recital happen.

I specifically wanted to acknowledge Jerry Bergonzi, my dear friend and colleague, who is the reason I wanted to attend NEC as a student. His musicianship, his original ideas, and his seemingly endless support continue to inspire me as a player and teacher. When I was a student at NEC, Jerry gave me my first real teaching opportunities; he entrusted me to teach his classes and ensembles. I aim to emulate Jerry’s positive spirit.

  • Ken Schaphorst, trumpet
  • Mikan Zlatkovich, piano
  • Cecil Alexander, guitar
  • James Heazlewood Dale, bass
  • Jerry Leake, percussion
  • Charles Weller, drums
  • Emmy Guo, voice
  1. Victor Schertzinger, Johnny Mercer | I Remember You

  2. Richard Rodgers, Lorenz Hart | It’s Easy to Remember (and so Hard to Forget)

  3. Ken Schaphorst | Mbira

  4. Brian Levy | World as Will


    “What is it that always is, and has no becoming; and what is it that becomes and passes away but never truly is.”

     “It dwells in us, not in the underworld, not in the heavenly stars: All this is brought to pass by the living spirit in us.” 

     (Quoted in Schopenhauer’s The World as Will and Representation)


  6. Brian Levy | The Greatest Weight

  7. Brian Levy | Con

  8. Brian Levy | Idle Tears

  9. Sonny Rollins | Airegin


    The Greatest Weight #341
    "What, if some day or night a demon were to steal after you into your loneliest loneliness and say to you: 'This life as you now live it and have lived it, you will have to live once more
    and innumerable times more; and there will be nothing new in it, but every pain and every joy and every thought and sigh and everything unutterably small or great in your life will have to return to you, all in the same succession and sequence – even this spider and this moonlight between the trees, and even this moment and I myself. The eternal hourglass of existence is turned upside down again and again, and you with it, speck of dust!'

     Would you not throw yourself down and gnash your teeth and curse the demon who spoke thus? Or have you once experienced a tremendous moment when you would have answered him: 'You are a god and never have I heard anything more divine.' If this thought gained possession of you, it would change you as you are or perhaps crush you. The question in each and every thing, 'Do you desire this once more and innumerable times more?' would lie upon your actions as the greatest weight. Or how well disposed would you have to become to yourself and to life to crave nothing more fervently than this ultimate eternal confirmation and seal?"   

    (Nietzsche, Aphorism 341 in The Gay Science)