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Photo by Inma del Valle


Our paths crossed in October 2019. Sira and Hugo had already studied the first year of the higher grade of music at the Conservatori Superior de Música de les Illes Balears, while Miquel and Jaime arrived from the mainland to continue their studies in Majorca. Even before the start of the 19/20 academic year, the four of us were thinking about this future project with great enthusiasm and excitement, having been approached by our former teachers Rodrigo Vila, Beatriz Tirado and Tomás Alonso. In fact, they were the ones who assigned the role that each of us has in the quartet and gave us the impetus we needed in our beginnings.

At that time, we watched with admiration what was our main quartet of reference during this stage: Psaiko Quartet, made up of our classmates from Majorca Martín Castro, Juan Alonso, Borja Beneyto, Franco Sánchez and Martin Gorospe. We dreamed of reaching their level and their intense and fruitful activity as a chamber ensemble. Such was our motivation for the project that on 20 November 2019 we gave our first concert, a month and a half after we first performed together. We premiered in the Auditorium of Conservatori Superior de Música de les Illes Balears with the works Andante et Scherzo by Eugène Bozza, Canzoniere de Scarlatti by Salvatore Sciarrino, Three Preludes by George Gershwin and Tierra de Chañares by Guillermo Schiavi. In fact, we hadn't even had time to find the ideal name for the quartet, so we premiered as Kastner Quartet, in honour of the first composer who wrote for our instrument.

Poster of our first concert

We entered 2020 already as Lítore Quartet and determined to go for new challenges. We were selected to participate in the face-to-face phases of the Tribuna SaxEnsemble competition, in Madrid, at the beginning of March 2020, thus living our first experience of travel and competition.

Lítore Quartet. Tribuna SaxEnsemble, Madrid, 5 March 2020. Photo by Rosa Alonso.

Sadly, shortly afterwards our inertia was interrupted by the arrival of the pandemic and confinement, and we were forced to stop rehearsing. Despite the situation, we continued to work on the repertoire with joint research carried out online, and began to plan the 20/21 season: undoubtedly, a course that would mark a before and after in our evolution as a group.

Working on the repertoire online with our teacher Beatriz Tirado



We landed in September 2020 with very few days to prepare the new repertoire we were to play at the 3 concerts in the coming weeks. In an act of practicality or, perhaps, of unconsciousness, we decided to go and live the 4 of us together. The point is that we prepared several Ciudades by Guillermo Lago, The Sobbing of the Phoenix by Aaron Siebert, Suix by Javier Girotto, Three Preludes by George Gerswhin and Tierra de Chañares by Guillermo Schiavi in time for the concerts in extremis that month. That last quarter of the year 2020, although cautious and masked, allowed us to travel around Majorca bringing different programmes to the public, adapted to the audience and to the specific spaces of each occasion. We visited wonderful churches such as the Church of Santa María de Sineu, the Church of Santa María la Major in Inca, the Church of Sant Llorenç de Selva or the centrally located church of Sant Felip Neri in Palma.

Together with Catalina Carrasco at the Fundació Miró

Photo of our concert at Can Balaguer

We opened the year 2021 working intensively on new repertoire to give our best in the competitions that awaited us in the coming months. Alexander Glazounov, Hèctor Parra, Aaron Siebert and Gabriel Erkoreka became the composers whose works would take us to the semi-final of the 14è Premi BBVA de Música de Cambra Montserrat Alavedra in March 2021.

This post-pandemic push led us to collaborate with the Fundació Pilar i JoanMiró and the dancer Catalina Carrasco, to perform in the historic concert hall of Can Balaguer and even to be chosen as one of the 5 finalists of the Art Jove competition.

Together with Catalina Carrasco at the Fundació Miró Photo of our concert at Can Balaguer

We opened the year 2021 working intensively on new repertoire to give our best in the competitions that awaited us in the coming months. Alexander Glazounov, Hèctor Parra, Aaron Siebert and Gabriel Erkoreka became the composers whose works would take us to the semi-final of the 14è Premi BBVA de Música de Cambra Montserrat Alavedra in March 2021.

Participating in the 14è Premi de Música de Cambra Montserrat Alavedra

Shortly afterwards, in May 2021, we won our First Prize in the Chamber Music Competition of Juventudes Musicales de Ávila, in a few days that today live on in our memories. It was there that we probably discovered the repertoire that we most enjoyed going on stage, and we realised that the immense work that had been involved in working on Robin Hoffmann's Der blutige Schaffner had been worthwhile. So much so, that two weeks later we received another First Prize at the XXIV Pòdiums de Música de Cambra in Sant Joan de Vilatorrada (Catalonia).

Memories of our participation in the competitions in Ávila and Sant Joan de Vilatorrada

Our success in these competitions, together with the Third Prize in the online King's Peak International Music Competition, led the largest saxophone diffusion website in Spain, Sax Rules, to echo our work by granting us an interview.

After a series of concerts in Mallorca with our programme History of Tango, reinforced with the help of our teacher Bea due to Hugo's absence, we said goodbye to the island until a few months from now to carry out our first tour of Galicia, with concerts in the towns of Baiona and O Rosal. There we will present an unpublished programme, entitled Alén, with which we will narrate through our music the history of the Galician exile to America in the 19th and 20th centuries. COVID-19, more than a year after having locked us at home, once again hindered our goals, as Hugo turned out to be positive the week of the concerts and we were forced to look for a substitute. We were extremely lucky to have Juan Alonso, our former colleague from Majorca and tenor of the Psaiko Quartet, who was returning home after his course of studies in Vienna. Thanks to his willingness and high level, we were able to carry out the concerts, something for which we will always be immensely grateful to him.

Poster of our tour in Galicia 2021. Photo by Inma del Valle. Poster by Noelia Pazos

That week we also had the opportunity to work on Suite Breve da Paisaxe with its composer, Juan Durán, who treated us very kindly and made us realise how important and interesting it is to work first hand with the composers of the music we perform. We did the same with Aaron Siebert, taking advantage of the fact that he was at his family home in Galicia, to work with him on his work The Sobbing of the Phoenix and to start planning a future recording...

Masterclass with Juan Durán Masterclass with Aaron Siebert



In June 2021, the physiotherapist and stage director Carles Expósito, also professor at our conservatory, suggested an experimental activity with the idea of working with him on group dynamics and other issues. In October 2021 we began this project, which we decided to call Beyond Music, and whose evolution we have been reflecting in different articles in this blog, taking advantage of the inauguration of the website.

In one of our sessions of Beyond Music with Carles

We began to prepare new repertoire with our sights set on the Certamen Internacional de Jóvenes Intérpretes Pedro Bote, to be held at the end of November 2021. The concerts in Sant Joan de Vilatorrada (Catalonia), Colonia de Sant Jordi (Majorca) and Palma helped us to "roll out" the new works and retake those we had already played previously. From 27th to 29th November we travelled to Villafranca de los Barros, Extremadura, to live what would be one of the best personal and professional experiences of the group. The atmosphere among the participants, the high level, the closeness of the jury, the kindness of all the inhabitants of the village, the excellent organization... all together amazed us and formed the ideal climate to stand in a final starring the singing of Dúo Lilium and María del Mar Morán and our four saxophones. There we won two prizes: the Second Prize and the Prize for the best interpretation of a work by a Spanish composer, thanks to our work on the work Fragments Striés by Héctor Parra.

Award ceremony of the Certamen Internacional de Jóvenes Intérpretes Pedro Bote, Villafranca de los Barros, Extremadura.

The other major objective of the last months of 2021 was Juventudes Musicales de España chamber music competition, which that year was held in Madrid on 4 and 5 December. There we managed to reach the final and defend our role with great sensations, feeling that all the work of the last months had been faithfully reflected in the auditorium of the Royal Conservatory of Madrid. We shared that last phase with two saxophone quartet friends, Synthese Quartet, who would end up winning the competition, and Delia Quartet, our colleagues from the Liceu in Barcelona. The fact that 3 of the 4 finalists were saxophone quartets showed the boom that the saxophone is experiencing in Spain and the enormous potential of our instrumental ensemble.

Participating in the final of the Juventudes Musicales de España competition, Royal Conservatory of Madrid. Photo by Harold Abellan

The recording of the work The Sobbing of the Phoenix, which had emerged as an idea last summer, materialised a few days later, on 18 December, in the Sonoteque studio in Palma. During the previous days, we worked intensively on the piece with its composer, our friend Aaron Siebert, and the result was unveiled on 11 March 2022.

Click here to listen to us!

The programme Andante con Moto on Radio Nacional Clásica decided to offer us a space to present this new recording on 19 March, granting us an interview in which our interpretation of the work was broadcast.

Interview in Andante con Moto, 19/03/2022

In 2022 we decided to delve a little deeper into the world of transcription and worked with cellist Ángel Luís Quintana on Haydn's Quartet for strings in F minor Op. 20 nº5.

Masterclass with Ángel Luís Quintana at the CSMIB

The months of February, March and April 2022 were full of concerts, and in them we were able to present our programme Les músiques del camí. We played for the first time in Valencia, as part of the Festival Hostes held at the Teatre del Raval in Gandia.

From our participation in the Festival Hostes, Gandia, Valencia

After a concert at the classic Teatre Sans in Palma on March 17th, we travelled back to our beloved Villafranca de los Barros and, between more planes and extra seats, we returned days later to Catalonia, this time to give a concert in Mataró.

Posters of some of our concerts at the beginning of the year 2022

As a result of the First Prize won on April 1st in the Chamber Music Competition of the Conservatori Superior de Música de les Illes Balears, we had the opportunity to offer a concert within the CSMIB Professors Concert Series, which we felt as our farewell as a quartet of the centre and it was a special day for us.

Memories of our last concert in the CSMIB Auditorium

On 16 May we found out that we had been awarded the Rookie Chamber Music Award, which gave us the opportunity to conduct a new interview with Luz Orihuela in the RNE programme Andante con Moto, in which we also recorded live the work Andante et Scherzo by Eugène Bozza, and which will be broadcast next September 2022.

After an intense end of the year in which Miquel, Sira and Hugo finished their higher grade studies, we decided to record at Ona Estudis, the first work we worked on as a quartet, Andante et Scherzo by Eugène Bozza, which we will soon publish. We also took the opportunity to enter the Art Jove chamber music competition, where we won First Prize in the final on 19 June.

After receiving the First Prize in the Art Jove competition, held in the Claustre de Sant Domingo, Inca, we were awarded with the first prize. Photo by Mónica González

In 2021 we had tried to be chosen for the presential phases of the Concurso Internacional de Música de Cámara de Arnuero, in Cantabria, but we had no luck. However, this year 2022, we had the opportunity to defend our music in Cantabria between the 8th and 10th of July. There we met again with a close and professional jury, together with an organisation completely devoted to the contest. Marveled by the landscape of Cantabria and the beaches of Arnuero, we managed to reach the final of the contest and win the first prize. Undoubtedly, another unforgettable experience for us.

Images of our participation in the Concurso Internacional de Música de Cámara de Arnuero, Arnuero, Cantabria

This award led us to appear again in the programme Andante con Moto on the 16th of July, and even to be on the front page of the Faro de Vigo a few days later.

Like the previous year, we travelled to Galicia to carry out a tour, this time to Santiago de Compostela, Ribadeo and O Pino and within the framework of the Peregrinos Musicais festival. With COVID out of the way and all of us enjoying the experience, we ended that week between binges of food and farewells. Now it's time to start a new stage.

Getting inspired before the concerts in Mondoñedo and Vilanova de Cerveira (Portugal).



We would like to take advantage of this summary of our first great stage as a quartet to say thank you to all those who have supported us during this time. In particular, we would like to thank Beatriz Tirado and Xabier Casal, who have been our quartet teachers over the years, for their effort and enthusiasm.

Lítore Quartet receiving a masterclass from Xabier Casal

Thanks also to our fellow saxophonists from the Mallorca Saxophone Studio of the CSMIB, who have accompanied us on this journey and from whom we have learned a lot. Thanks to Carles Expósito for his advice and for counting on us to carry out his experiments that have allowed us to articulate this project to take chamber music ensembles to another dimension. Thanks to all the juries and contestants of the competitions we have attended, who have given us such good advice and who have helped us to work in the right direction. Thanks to all the teachers who have offered us their help in masterclasses and to all those friends and professionals who have given us their opinion with the aim of giving us a hand. Thanks to all those institutions, organisations and entities that promote young musicians' projects, as their activity is essential for the cultural and artistic development of a country. We hope to see, in the coming years, how this type of initiatives that promote the youngest culture will increase in order not to let the enormous talent of our quarry escape. Thanks to our families, especially our parents, who have been our emotional and economic pillar all these years. Thanks to all of you who have crossed paths with us and have inspired such a young and ambitious project. You are part of all this.

Together with our classmates and our beloved director Henrie Adams.

"And now what? -they ask us. Hugo will go to study a master's degree in Maastricht, Sira will study in Zurich, Miquel in Helsinki and Jaime will stay in Majorca to finish his Bachelor degree. From living together, to being separated by hundreds, even thousands of kilometres.

Don't panic!

We have many projects in mind, concerts on our calendar and even premieres of works dedicated to us. Long-distance relationships are difficult, but we will do our best so that, when we get together to prepare a project, we can perform at our best and continue to evolve as a group. We are aware that the situation is complicated, plane tickets are getting more and more expensive and we know that personal responsibilities cannot be neglected; but we are also willing to give up certain things, to put aside our individuality for the love of the group when necessary and to invest in a project that has given us so much and that has cost us so many drops of sweat (especially Miquel on warm days). It has been a difficult three years, with changes of professors, pandemics and obstacles that adulthood puts in our way. After all, we have managed to live together for two years without killing each other... could there be a more difficult challenge? Perhaps that has been the key to the materialisation of our effort: the fact that the personal bond has remained strong throughout this time in spite of everything. In the end, time will tell what is in store for us. It is up to us to fight for it by playing the saxophone. What is clear is that a new stage is beginning, neither worse nor better: simply different. The past is now ours, and everything we have achieved will not be taken away from us by anyone or anything. We continue walking together.

Picture by Inma del Valle


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