Alžbeta Greenwood-Byrne (née Klasová), born in Slovakia, graduated with master’s degree from the Royal College of Music, where she studied under the guidance of Kyle Horch. She was a Foundation Scholar, supported by the Dr Michael West Award.
The saxophonist made her debut as a soloist with the State Philharmonic Orchestra in Košice in November 2016, when she was invited to perform two concertos with the orchestra as a soloist.
As a soloist, Alžbeta took part in masterclasses taken by Lars Mlekusch, Kenneth Tse, Marcus Weiss, Amy Dickson, Pawel Gusnar, Gordan Tudor, Bence Szepesi, Philippe Portojoie, Oto Vrhovnik, Lev Pupis and Ryszard Żołędziewski.
Her solo performances include a recital in festival ARTIS (SVK), Charity Concert for Ukraine, Charity Concert for Serbia, St. Michael’s Church in Highgate, St. Cuthbert and St. Matthias Church. She organised the 10th Anniversary Concert of Saxophone in Košice (2016), where she also played a live concert at Slovak Radio and took part in Musical Resonances.
She was selected to be part of the orchestra and play at the Gala Concert of The Musica Mundi International Festival under the direction of violinist Leonid Kerbel and pianist Alexander Gavrylyuk in Château du Lac, Belgium.
Alžbeta has a huge interest in chamber music and has played in several quartets (Parallax Saxophone Quartet, ATAM Saxophone Quartet, The Rohmer Saxophone Quartet, Hestia Quartet). Together they took part in various masterclasses under the guidance of David Brutti, Gerard McChrystal, Frank Timpe, Ignacio Gascón and Raaf Hekkema. She also enjoyed being a regular member of the RCM Saxophone Ensemble and cooperated on recording with the saxophone department of RNCM.
Chamber appearances include performances at Kings Place, Košice Spring Music Festival, Kensington and Chelsea Women’s Club at the Lansdowne Club (Mayfair), Victoria and Albert Museum, BAFTA Club, Worshipful Company of Farmers, RCM International Women’s Day 2017, Waltham Abbey Church, Regent Hall and St Hugh of Lincoln (Hertfordshire). As a very enthusiastic swing/big band player, Alžbeta performed in a collaboration with Mark Nightingale (Britten Theatre RCM, February 2017), as well as in a performance of Duke Ellington’s "Such Sweet Thunder" at the Royal Festival Hall (2016).
She was appointed a Saxophone Mentor for the SPARKS Junior Programme at RCM in 2015 and spent a few years working with this department.
In 2012 Alžbeta won 1st prize in the National Competition of Slovak Conservatories in Žilina. In November 2014 she received a Deloitte Talent Award (SVK). Together with her, the Hestia Quartet became the Launchpad Prize Winner (June 2015). Alžbeta also received an award as a finalist of the Talents of New Europe grant competition (2016).
She was selected, with the ATAM Saxophone Quartet, to give a recital at the 18th World Saxophone Congress in Croatia in July 2018. Together they toured Slovakia at the end of the year, which was also Alžbeta's final performance as a member of this chamber group.
Alžbeta took part in recording with chamber choir Coro 94 in Norfolk and together they launched their CD Allus in December 2018. In 2019, engagements included a recital with pianist Viv McLean in France, a concert in Milton Keynes with the Polymnia choir, and an appearance at the Brandenburg Festival with Coro 94 in London.
Alžbeta recorded her debut album EPOCH in 2021 at Stapleford Granary in Cambridgeshire, UK and it was released in December of that year. After her maternity break, she is now back to teaching and performing, both as a soloist and chamber player.
© 2024 adam greenwood-byrne
Cover photo credit © Gabriella Fuzi Photography