Paul Brodie

b. 10 April 1934, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, d. 19 November 2007, Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Growing up in a rural region, Brodie first played clarinet before switching to saxophone. He studied music at…
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Artist Biography

b. 10 April 1934, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, d. 19 November 2007, Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Growing up in a rural region, Brodie first played clarinet before switching to saxophone. He studied music at the University of Michigan at Ann Arbors. In the late 50s and early 60s he appeared at New York’s Town Hall and was featured with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. In Toronto, he became a teacher at the Royal Conservatory of Music, one of the first formal schools to specialize in saxophone, and he later taught at the University of Toronto and at York University. He also founded and taught at the Brodie School of Music and Modern Dance in Toronto (1961-79). At the end of the 60s, Brodie founded the World Saxophone Congress in collaboration with Eugene Rousseau. In 1972, Brodie, who chiefly played the alto saxophone, formed his Saxophone Quartet in which he was teamed with some of his former pupils.

Brodie’s virtuoso playing and his clear, full tone greatly extended the appeal of the saxophone in classical music circles. In addition to developing his reputation at home, Brodie toured incessantly, attracting large audiences throughout the Americas, Europe, Australia and Asia. His visits to China were especially fruitful, and his seminars and workshops were extremely well attended. Among musicians with whom he played and sometimes recorded were pianist Valerie Tryon, harpist Erica Goodman, organist Eric Robertson, guitarist Michael Troester and saxophonist Jean-Marie Londeix. Brodie appeared on numerous albums, many of which were on the Golden Crest label and which in later years were chiefly available only through his own website. He also appeared on radio and television in Canada and was heard on the soundtracks of several films, including Heaven Can Wait (1978), where he dubbed the saxophone playing of on-screen star Warren Beatty, and Circle Of Two (1980).

Eager to expand the classical repertoire for the saxophone, Brodie collaborated with composers such as Keith Bissell, Lothar Klen and Tibor Polgar on new works for the instrument. In addition to his playing, Brodie wrote a number of instruction books, including A Student’s Guide To The Saxophone, and transcriptions of his solos were also published. In 1994, Brodie was awarded The Order of Canada for his lifelong work. He died while undergoing heart surgery.