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, as well as has competing and being awarded numerous prizes 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 Medici International Music Competition, the Manhattan International Competition, the Long Island Conservatory Music Competition (LISMA), American Classical Young Musician Award, Charleston International Music Competition, the Marker and Pioneer International Music Competition, the Royal Sound Music Competition, the North International Music Competition, the Valencia Awards Music Competition, as well as the Annual Fischoff National Competition.
Lee has had the 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. After 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, Bernie Dresel, Kevin Axt, Nathan Tanouye, and 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, Jason Caslor, Gary Hill, Jamal Duncan, 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, Kate Vincent, 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 Flora Quartet. Through Flora, Lee has been able to educate and perform at numerous high schools and universities in the Southwest region of the US.
Recently, Flora Quartet has just been announced that they received news being named as Finalists in the 2022 MTNA Chamber Music Competition, as well as the 2022 NASA Quartet Competition. On February 3rd - 6th, , Flora Quartet will have their Las Vegas Tour that consisted of teaching masterclasses as well as performances throughout the Southwest region, and finishing with playing William Bolcom’s Concerto Grosso for Saxophone Quartet and Band with The Desert Winds.
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, LefreQue Sound Solutions, and ReedGeek Inc.