Zachary Shemon

Zachary Shemon
Professor of Saxophone
Conservatory

Contact Info
816-235-2733
110 Grant Hall

About

Professor of Saxophone Zach Shemon enjoys a versatile career as a soloist, chamber musician, orchestral musician, and pedagogue. In Kansas City, Shemon regularly performs with the Kansas City Symphony and with the contemporary chamber music ensemble, newEar.    

Shemon serves as alto saxophonist and co-artistic director of the PRISM Quartet. Since joining the ensemble, PRISM has released numerous recordings on the Albany, innova, Naxos, New Dynamic, New Focus, and XAS labels and performed on many of the world’s leading festivals for contemporary music including the Bang on a Can Marathon, Beijing Modern Music Festival, and SONiC Festival. Shemon has performed with the quartet as a soloist with the Arizona State Symphony Orchestra, Boston Modern Orchestra Project, Cornell Symphony Orchestra, Pacific Symphony, and UMKC Conservatory Wind Symphony, among others. PRISM is also committed to educational outreach and has held residencies at top music institutions around the world including the Beijing Central Conservatory, Curtis Institute, Eastman School of Music, Hartt School, University of Michigan, Princeton University, Rice University, Tianjin Conservatory, UMKC Conservatory, and Yale University, among others. 

As a soloist, Shemon was awarded 1st prize at the inaugural International Saxophone Symposium and Competition in Columbus, GA. He was a soloist at the 2020 North American Saxophone Alliance biennial conference, performing Joel Love’s Solace: A Lyric Concerto. His recording of Love’s concerto, performed with the UMKC Conservatory Wind Symphony, was released on XAS Records in 2021. Shemon has also performed as a concerto soloist with the Indiana University Philharmonic, the UMKC Conservatory Wind Ensemble, and the bands at the University of Michigan, as well as with the Michigan Philharmonic, and the Sioux City Symphony, among others. Active in the saxophone community, he is regularly invited to perform at national and regional conferences held by the North American Saxophone Alliance.

Shemon maintains a thriving studio of graduate and undergraduate saxophone majors at the University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory. Current and former students have been finalists in national and international competitions, as well as in auditions for U.S. military bands. His former students hold teaching positions at colleges, high schools, and middle schools throughout the country. He spends his summers on the faculty at the Interlochen Arts Camp and directing the Kansas City Saxophone Workshop. Shemon holds degrees in performance from Indiana University and the University of Michigan. He has also studied at the Université Européenne de Saxophone in Gap, France and the Aspen Music Festival and School. His primary teachers are Donald Sinta and Otis Murphy.

Shemon is a Conn-Selmer artist and performs on Selmer (Paris) saxophones. As a D’Addario Woodwinds artist, he performs on Reserve reeds, aids in product research and design, and is an active clinician throughout the world.