Thank you so much for your kind words and observations, and for creating an amazing, generative and inspiring class! It is as I have told you, the highlight of my week!
— Suzanne LaGrande
Best workshop taken since 1985. I’m declaring my writer’s block officially over.
— Kris Demien
Thick in the Throat, Honey makes ecstatic and inspiring work: a good thing to have in one’s life!
— Mark Cunningham, writer
John is a caring and thoughtful teacher, and is determined to find a way that best suits each of his students to reach his or her full potential. John’s ability to connect with his students and his strong capacity for adjusting and explaining things in a clear, understandable way make him one of the best teachers I ever had the pleasure of working with.
— Jane Botieff-Portnoff, flutist and photographer
Thank you again for such a wonderful workshop. It was such an accepting and encouraging environment as a beginner and an artist. Thank you for sharing your gift with me and the others today.
— Lisa Wolverton
Thick in the Throat, Honey will make you blush.
— Stephanie Heit, dancer
Your “Pulse” poem is amazing.
— Shawn Aveningo, writer
The jaw-dropping highlight of the evening was the sudden appearance of fiery, freeform alto saxophonist John Savage, who burst from the shadows with horn wailing….
— Voltage
Savage, who studied with Andrew Hill, uses extended techniques in the service of musical content, not instrumental tricks.
— The Jazz Book: From Ragtime to the 21st Century
I just bought and listened to “Love Letters We Never Sent,” straight through. Damn. How the hell am I supposed to go out into the world and do grownup stuff today, right now, as planned? I want to sing to the celery and tap all staccato on the cans of beans. Well done!
— Jo Preucel, writer
John Savage’s flute, which emulates Japanese shakuhachi, suggests shadows and mists.
— The Washington Post
…Savage is a badass, knock-down-drag-out force to be reckoned with….
— Willamette Week
Today’s class (the last few, in fact) was especially phenomenal. The energy of this group is pretty amazing. I am gushy about how much you bring to each class.
— Peggy Acott
Savage’s sole spotlight found him in an extended screaming and yearning alto solo, similarly reaching the high-pitched heights that are common flights of the great altoist Noah Howard.
— All About Jazz
Claudia creates a welcoming, safe space for creative exploration. Her workshops emphasize generativity through a combination of targeted exploration of mentor texts (work from other writers), purposeful creative exercises and opportunities to share work. Claudia’s workshops introduced me to the power of form and structure as a means for opening the door to creativity. While I was stalled in my prose work, I found myself suddenly inspired and filled with creative energy through poetry.

Claudia’s workshops have raised the level of my use of language in all my writing and given me multiple vehicles for tackling challenging subjects through my writing. This powerful combination of form, nurturing space, celebration of language and honoring each writer’s unique self has enabled me to write about many subjects that in the past were too close to the bone to touch. I’ve been able to reintegrate previously disjointed aspects of my life through the work I’ve done in her class. As a writer, as a teacher, as a person, I have found Claudia’s workshops empowering and energizing. Claudia’s workshops feed and nurture the creative soul.
— Cindy McGean
The Colin Stetson of the flute—in the best way possible.
— Pitch and Siren
From the harsh sound of Ian Anderson to the beautiful tone of Herbie Mann....
— The Oregonian
The poem “Light on Fire” is simply an explosion of elements. Over five confidently fragile sections, all loosely based around color, we are presented with powerful imagery, brave exposition, intimate encounters, and big questions that never cease to awe.
— John Sibley Williams
I feel that those lucky enough to have been instructed by John, regardless of the subject, come away with a renewed enthusiasm for and outlook on their creative endeavors.
— Will Northlich-Redmond, composer and performer
I have worked with Claudia for over a year now, and I must say she is an amazing editor and poet. She manages to give thoughtful and thorough advice and revisions without being discouraging. My work has improved tremendously from her advice and guidance. I even have interest from a literary magazine for publication! As a working mom, time is of the essence for me, and she lets me pursue my poetry without burden. She is truly a gifted poet and mentor.
— Neha Hewitt
Jan Garbarek-esque saxophone.
— The Jazz Scene (Jazz Society of Oregon)
[His] flute playing is gorgeous.
— Downbeat
Flutists are bound to admire Savage’s control, his musical self-sufficiency, and his sheer endurance in pulling off this substantial opus [A Moment in Mythica].
— The Flutist Quarterly
I love Claudia’s poetry workshops. She has a wealth of knowledge about poets and styles, and brings her unique blend of humor, lushness and musicality to every writing experience. She celebrates the individual voice of each writer while offering ways to reach greater depth, breadth or intensity, as needed. Claudia’s workshops offer an opportunity to play with language which opens the doors to all sorts of possibilities. For the first time in my life I woke up on Monday thinking of poetry instead of work.
— Suzy Harris
Personally, I have learned a great deal from my professional collaborations with John because he has a strong conceptual approach that is consistent across his work as a performer as well as an educator. It is rewarding to work with him.
— Lisa Bost-Sandberg, composer and performer
[Cartridge is] a cinematic excursion through arch-modern electro-acoustic strategies, from drum ‘n’ bass to quasi-Qawwali, from deep-listening nooks and crannies and beyond to other angular threads of urgent musicality.
— Willamette Week
Dr. Savage’s teaching techniques are innovative and effective. He is passionate about every individual achieving their goals and goes to great lengths to provide curriculum that is tailored to each student.
— Amelia Coffee, independent musician
John has had an extremely positive influence on my son’s development and was responsible for his acceptance to the Interlochen Music Camp in Michigan.
— Edna B. Chun, D.M., parent