The Junior Jazz Workshop curriculum is designed to support a wide range of instrumental development in jazz performance. The core program is comprised of Instructional Classes and a selection of Special Topics in Jazz Performance. At the end of each week, students will have gained a deeper insight to key aspects of playing jazz and applicable tools to further their progress.

Goals

At the end of each week, students will have a…

- deeper understanding of fundamental aspects of jazz.

- new set of techniques for improvising music.

- foundation of common repertoire to all jazz musicians.  

- better understanding of how jazz has developed and continues to evolve.

Master Class

An advanced session that discusses and demonstrates specific techniques of any given style including solo learning with analysis of texture, form, and meaning. Taught by listening, asking questions that require deeper knowledge and playing.

Large Ensemble

Ensembles will explore a selected repertoire from the large ensemble works of Duke Ellington, Benny Carter, Mary Lou Williams, Fletcher Henderson, Don Redman, to the pieces we write today.

 

Small Ensemble

Combos will study and perform music of all eras. Students will be able to play together in less formal settings, but be provided a training ground around the format and value of this time honored jazz tradition.

Instrument Studio

These group lessons will focus on instrumental pedagogy from a foundational and jazz standpoint. All aspects of technique will be covered with an emphasis on breathing, tone, attack, flexibility, velocity, range, phrasing, control, special effects, reading, and expressing different emotions.

Jazz Language

A dedicated session to developing how the language of jazz is learned through playing, listening, and the understanding of theoretical elements. Students will participate on their instruments as the instructors guide them through key concepts.

Special Topics in Jazz Performance

These classes are designed to address elements of jazz performance that are crucial to the development of performance skills. Students will select three courses to take during the week-long program.

 

Jazz Theory: An in-depth focus on the unique theoretical applications of jazz will be analyzed and discussed in the context of seminal recordings, original jazz compositions, and landmark instrumental solos.

 

Ensemble Techniques: The instructor will focus on and analyze key aspects to successfully performing in a small ensemble. Recordings and practice tips will be introduced in a practical way for students to maximize practice aimed at preparing them for a variety of group settings. 

Applied Transcription: There are many ways to approach jazz improvisation, and one method proven among jazz musicians for generations is the practice of transcription. In this class the instructor will guide students through the process of learning improvised solos by ear and how to apply that material to their own playing.

 

Guided Listening: During these structured listening sessions, instructors will guide students through selected recordings and discuss how the music was developed and how those musical elements remain active strategies in playing jazz today. Listening to music collectively will expand anyone’s perception and interpretation of recorded music to better inform how they approach playing their own instrument.

 

Jazz Masters: Students will be guided through important moments in the development of jazz music in history. Key figures will be identified along with their significant contributions to the art form still in practice today.

Jazz Piano for Non-Pianists: Basic technical skills and practice tips will be introduced to non-pianists as a way to assist their musical development. Scales, arpeggios, and chord progressions in the context of jazz standard repertoire will be addressed.

 

Jazz Drumming for Non-Drummers: Students will be given basic techniques to understand and practice basic jazz drum patterns. All jazz musicians are responsible for the rhythm, the opportunity to experience creating a swing pattern from the perspective of the drummer will develop a strong foundation in the essential feel of jazz.