Three Reeds Duo and friends to present concert Sept. 30


The Three Reeds Duo will be joined by fellow Northwestern State faculty Chialing Hsieh and Malena McLaren for a concert on Friday Sept. 30 at 6 p.m. in Magale Recital Hall.

The Three Reeds Duo is Leah Forsyth on oboe and Paul Forsyth on saxophone. The program, “Three Reeds Duo and Friends” will be “Places We Are From” by Jenni Brandon, “Trio” by Sigfrid Karg-Elert, “Wings” by Joan Tower and “Steadfast” by Derek Brown.

The Three Reeds Duo is a unique chamber ensemble that has performed for audiences on three different continents. This oboe/saxophone duo, formed in 2005, has built a repertoire ranging from baroque and classical transcriptions to contemporary concert literature. Three Reeds has performed in a variety of venues all over the world, ranging from NASA Conferences and World Saxophone Congresses to high schools and universities to traditional wedding ceremonies.

In 2015, Three Reeds was awarded the Alford Professorship at Northwestern State. This professorship allowed them to record their debut CD, “signals cross.”  Released in the summer of 2016, this is the first CD ever recorded of oboe/saxophone duos.  The Three Reeds Duo has commissioned works for oboe/saxophone duo from such composers as Peter Lieuwen, Alyssa Morris, Gregory Wanamaker, Marcus Maroney and others.

Leah Forsyth is an assistant professor of oboe at Northwestern State. Prior to joining the NSU faculty in 2011, she served as oboist with the United States Army Field Band in Washington, D.C., from 2007-2011, where she also performed regularly throughout the United States with the Woodwind Ambassadors Quintet.  She previously held the position of solo English Horn with the West Virginia Symphony Orchestra from 2005-2007. Leah Forsyth holds the positions of principal oboe of the Rapides Symphony Orchestra in Alexandria and second oboe with the Texarkana Symphony. She performs regularly with the Shreveport Symphony as well as other orchestras throughout Louisiana and Texas.

Equally adept at both the classical and jazz repertoire, saxophonist Paul Forsyth has performed and taught at numerous concert halls, universities, and conferences around the world. He has been featured as a soloist and chamber musician at North American Saxophone Alliance Conferences, World Saxophone Congresses, John Donald Robb Composer Symposiums, and International Saxophone Symposiums. As a chamber musician, Paul Forsyth is a member of two renowned ensembles, the Three Reeds Duo and the Iridium Quartet. Each ensemble has multiple recordings, the most recent albums being “Metamorphosis” and “Skylines” respectively. Paul Forsyth joined the faculty of Northwestern State in the fall of 2007 and currently serves as professor of saxophone.

Hailed as a “brilliant pianist” (Fanfare), Hsieh has performed recitals in Europe, Asia and throughout the United States and has been a featured pianist on seven CD’s for the Centaur, Innova, Enharmonic, and Ballpark record labels.  Hsieh is an associate professor of collaborative piano at Northwestern State, and has given masterclasses throughout the United States and abroad and served as a judge and adjudicator for competitions and events.  She earned her M.M. and D.M.A. in piano performance at the University of Cincinnati, College-Conservatory of Music.

McLaren is the professor of clarinet at NSU. She earned a Bachelor of Music Education and a Master’s degree in Clarinet Performance from the University of New Mexico, and a Doctor of Music Arts degree from the University of North Texas.  Her teachers include Keith Lemmons and Dr. James Gillespie. McLaren has performed chamber and solo repertoire throughout the U.S., Slovakia, the Czech Republic, England, Spain and Belgium.  She is a core member of the Rapides Symphony Orchestra.  Her scholarly works include two articles in The Clarinet. She has performed in solo recitals at the 2008, 2010, 2012, 2014, 2015 and 2018 International ClarinetFest conferences. In 2011 she received the Magale Endowed Professorship to perform and conduct archival research in Madrid, Spain.