Biography

saxophone

Winner of a 2022 Avery Fisher Career Grant, STEVEN BANKS is an ambassador for the classical saxophone, dedicated to showcasing its vast capabilities, expanding its repertoire, and rethinking the boundaries of classical music. This performance marks his debut under San Francisco Symphony auspices.

As a soloist, Mr. Banks has appeared with the Cleveland Orchestra, Colorado Symphony, and Colorado Music Festival. As a composer, he recently premiered a new work for alto saxophone with the Borromeo String Quartet at Carnegie Hall, and he has completed commissions for the Northwestern University Saxophone Ensemble and the Project 14 initiative at Yale University.

He is an advocate for diversity and inclusion in the classical realm. In 2017, he spoke at the TEDxNorthwesternU conference about changing institutionalized prejudices against women and people of color, and he has written and given guest lectures on the history of Black classical composers. He holds degrees from Indiana University Jacobs School of Music and Northwestern University’s Bienen School of Music, and he is currently Assistant Professor of Saxophone at Ithaca College.

Mr. Banks is an endorsing artist for Conn-Selmer instruments, D’Addario Woodwinds, lefreQue Sound Solutions, and Key Leaves.