WALTER SAUL (b 1954 )
Distinguished composer and pianist Dr. Walter B. Saul II holds degrees from Duke University and the Eastman School of Music. His many composition honors include 24 ASCAP awards from 1990–2013, as well as “Composer of the Year” commissions from North Carolina Music Teachers Association (1986) and Oregon Music Teachers Association (1990). He was also awarded the Burlington Northern Faculty Achievement Awards in Scholarship at Warner Pacific College in 1989 and 1992. In 1998 and 2002, he won Warner Pacific College’s Kendall Award for Scholarship. In 1996 and 1999, Saul was one of ten composers selected to participate in the Ernest Bloch Composers Symposium in Newport, Oregon. Saul has also received numerous Meet the Composer grants. Performances of his works have occurred in 24 states and five nations. Saul’s 230 works include six works for orchestra, nine for wind ensemble, five piano sonatas, 40 other works for piano, 47 works for chamber ensembles, 38 choral works, four works for handbell choirs, and 31 vocal works. As a pianist Saul has performed and presented clinics extensively. He has been heard on radio in four states and has served as clinician and adjudicator throughout the Carolinas and in Oregon and California. He has performed both books of Bach’s Well-tempered Clavier from memory; Book I in 1975 and Book II in 1997, thereby separating these performances by the same amount of time that separated their composition. In a further tribute to Bach, he recently completed From Alpha to Omega, his own volume of 24 preludes and fugues in all major and minor keys, progressing from A major (Alpha) through G# minor (Omega). Three preludes and fugues from this work have been performed in Carnegie Hall in 2004 and 2009.
He has released four CDs of his works on the Tarsus Music and Enharmonic Records labels: Out of Darkness Into His Marvelous Light (Tarsus, 1998), From Alpha to Omega (Tarsus, 2002), Songs of Requited Love (Tarsus, 2007), and Walter Saul: Sonatas and Meditations for Piano (Enharmonic, 2013). His music appears also on a fifth CD, Les flûtes enchantées (Music Performance Foundation, Inc., 2010), and on the Ring of Fire 2001 DVD (Bitwise Multimedia, 2001). Saul has taught at Eastern Illinois University, Pfeiffer College in Misenheimer, North Carolina, and Warner Pacific College in Portland, Oregon. He presently is Professor of Music at Fresno Pacific University, where he teaches piano, theory, composition, music history, and music appreciation.