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Garfield Avenue project affects travel on lower campus.

The project is expected to be completed in fall 2018, and the footbridge will be closed from late May to late August in both 2017 and 2018.

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Join the Jazz

Take a deep breath. You got this! Jazz studies auditions help us place you in groups of similar skill level to maximize cohesiveness. Even if you're not a music major or minor, we invite you to come audition. These auditions will also help prepare you for the future career challenges of performing in front of a panel of evaluators. We want to see you at your best and have put together information, requirements and tips for you so you can shine your brightest.

Jazz ensemble auditions take place on the second and third day of classes. Audition materials are located outside of the jazz studies director's office five days before auditions begin. Combo auditions take place during the big band auditions.

Fall 2016 Ensemble Audition Information

Signing up for Jazz Ensemble Auditions just became much easier! Just sign up for one time slot in your instrument's area, then submit and show up for your audition time with the printed materials that are attached to the e-mail. Bring in a prepared piece. It is optional but can make a difference with band and chair placement. Practice hard. Play pretty.

Check back here for fall 2017 audition dates and times.

When big bands meet

Jazz Ensemble I, TR, 12:30-1:45 p.m. and F, 1-1:50 p.m.
Jazz Ensemble II, MW, 12-12:50 p.m.
Jazz Ensemble III, MW, 1-1:50 p.m.
Jazz Ensemble IV, MW, 11-11:50 a.m.
Jazz Ensemble V, TBD, evening 

  • Play a prepared piece. This should not exceed one minute.
  • Prepare music taken from the packet with your instrument name on it.
  • Saxophones:  Play as many doubles as possible in your prepared pieces. These pieces need be 12 measures or less. Doubles ability makes a difference!
  • Improvising:  Each ensemble needs improvisers. This can make a difference.
  • Lead trumpet audition piece: If you would like to also play lead trumpet, there is a special audition part to play.  If you do not make a lead trumpet chair you may still play a section part.
  • What we are looking for: tone color, pitch, rhythm, style and creating a groove in the music are what we will listen for. If the music is too difficult, play it slower until the musical attributes listed above are achieved. Tempo should not be a first priority.
  • Audition regardless of your ability. The music is meant to challenge all levels of ability.

Big bands - winds only (non-jazz chair)

Audition materials consist of a jazz etude, scales and possible sight reading. Auditionees are encouraged to bring a prepared piece to the audition to exemplify their strengths. During the audition, consideration will be given to style, range, tone, intonation and aggressiveness. Several styles such as swing, funk, ballad, and Latin may be used in the audition. Please read the suggestions for audition on the audition instructions outside the jazz studies office.

Jazz combos / jazz chairs

Those students interested in playing a jazz chair and/or playing in a jazz combo will go through a large jazz audition first. After this audition, students interested in improvisation will be asked to play changes prepared and at sight from the Jamey Aebersold Jazz CD. A jazz studies faculty member will select the tunes.

Big bands and combos — rhythm section players

All student rhythm section players will play in a group setting with other auditionees. Each student will be asked to prepare a variety of jazz literature as well as composing in several styles. In addition each rhythm section player will be asked to solo over changes. Drum set players will be given a small group tune and asked to play the intent of the tune by themselves with solo to jazz faculty. Drum set players should be able to demonstrate all styles including, but not limited to: slow, medium, up-tempo swing, funk, shuffle, samba, bossa nova, jazz waltz, etc. Drum set players will be asked to play a blues and/or rhythm changes with guitar, piano, bass and solo on fours.

Students play the bassoon

Jazz scholarships

Jazz scholarships are available to students based on need and ability. To audition for a jazz scholarship, send a digital recording of yourself performing a standard jazz composition with an electronic rhythm section, live players or feature or solo with your big band.  Scholarships are available for original composition/arrangement abilities, rhythm section instruments, improvisation, saxophone doubles and lead trumpet.

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