Bonson Lee is a Graduate Teaching Assistant at Arizona State University. Throughout Lee’s musical career, he has performed at saxophone camps, clinics, Las Vegas Saxophone Day, NASA Region Conferences, and has competed in the solo and chamber rounds of the Music Teachers National Association (MTNA), the North American Saxophone Alliance (NASA), the Coltman Chamber Music Competition, The American Prize Competition, The Manhattan International Competition, as well as the Annual Fischoff National Competition.
Lee has had great privilege of performing at the highest level in collaboration with ensembles. In 2016, he was part of the UNLV Wind Orchestra’s album entitled The Return, and in 2017’s album, 24K Gould. In 2016, Lee was also part of the UNLV Wind Orchestra’s performance at the grand finale of the Festival des Anches d’Azur in La Croix Valmer, France, by invitation of the city’s mayor. During its 20-year history, the festival has grown and evolved significantly, and the UNLV Wind Orchestra has been the only American university ensemble ever invited to perform (UNLV website: https://www.unlv.edu/news-story/unlv-wind-orchestra-presents-presidents-concert-nov-19).
Lee was also in UNLV Jazz Ensemble I’s album “Rail Trails” / “Latin Journey III” 2017. Through UNLV Jazz Ensemble I, Lee was able to compete at the 60th Monterey Next Generation Jazz Festival held in Monterey, California in March 2017, in which they received 1st Place Prize at the Top College Big Band division. From winning the competition, Lee and the UNLV Jazz Ensemble I was invited to perform at the 60th Annual Monterey Jazz Festival in September 2017, also held in Monterey, California.
As a jazz musician, Lee has performed with many artists throughout the US. Notable artists Lee had the opportunity to collaborate with include Allen Vizzutti, Adam Schroeder, Bob Mintzer, Carl Saunders, Kenny Rampton, Don Cunningham, Clint Holmes, Eric Marienthal, among others. Lee also had the opportunity to work with conductors including Tom Leslie, Johan de Meij, David Waybright, Dave Loeb, Yunior Lopez, Nathan Tanouye, as well as Col. John Bourgeois.
Lee is actively engaging as an advocate for all genres of music thus having collaborated with composers such as Bruce Broughton, Tom Davoren, Anthony LaBounty, Jennifer Bellor, Diego Vega, Randall Stupka, Tanner Bayles, Shawn Schwertfeger, Brooke Herndon, Michael Spicer, Jorge Machain, Julian Tanaka, Carlos Mata Alvarez, among others.
In addition to numerous solo performances within the US and abroad, Lee has great experience in chamber music playing and collaboration in many wind ensembles and saxophone ensembles, one of which was being the baritone chair of the saxophone quartet helíos_. Through helíos_, Lee has been able to educate and perform at numerous high schools and universities in the Southwest region of the US.
Recently, helíos_ has just been announced that they received the 2nd Place Prize at the 47th Annual Fischoff Competition, 3rd Place Prize at the 2020 NASA Biennial Quartet Competition, as well as being Finalists in the 2020 MTNA Chamber Music Competition. Earlier in September 2019, helíos_ just finished their Las Vegas Tour that consisted of teaching masterclasses as well as performances throughout the Southwest region.
Lee is currently finishing up his Doctorate of Musical Arts degree at Arizona State University under the direction and guidance of Dr. Christopher Creviston. Lee obtained a Master of Music from Arizona State University Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts School of Music and a Bachelor’s of Music at the University of Nevada Las Vegas School of Music. His current and former saxophone teachers include Dr. Creviston, Mark McArthur, John Seaton, and Eric Maine.
Lee is an endorsing artist for Silverstein Works and LefreQue Sound Solutions.
You can find Bonson’s 2021 Americas Music Competition performance here.
You can find Bonson’s 2021 Contemporary Music Competition performance here.