This ensemble will perform a wide range of Jazz music (a genre that is constantly evolving), with an emphasis on both ensemble playing and improvisation skills. By playing together, students will learn how blues, swing, latin, and rock elements have all fueled this music called jazz. Students will also learn how major Jazz artists such as Ellington, Monk, Mingus, Wayne Shorter, Ornette Coleman and others have approached composition. As a group we will explore different techniques for playing over chord changes and ways to make improvised solos more interesting, both harmonically and rhythmically. Whether playing a jazz standard, a student composition, or free music, the emphasis will be on listening and on interacting with each other, finding ways to create blend, groove, dynamic contrast, and tension/release. Students will also be encouraged to bring in arrangements, transcriptions, and compositions, which will be read and developed by the ensemble. Students need to have adequate technique on a musical instrument, be able to read music and have a basic understanding of harmony (chord structures, chord-scales, etc.).
Auditions will take place on Tuesday, May 16 from 4:30pm – 6:30pm in Jennings 335A.