Jazz Studies Curriculum

Core Classes

Jazz Performance Majors complete a thorough battery of core classes to complete their degree:

  • Improvisation - Four levels concentrating on voice-leading, chord-scale applications and advanced rhythmic techniques for improvising on standards, modal and free-form jazz compositions.
  • Arranging - Techniques for small-group and large ensemble arranging.
  • Composition - Writing in a wide variety of styles.
  • Jazz Piano - Techniques for solo and ensemble piano performance – required of all majors.
  • Jazz History - Study of jazz from its origins to the present, and its relationship to social and cultural movements.

Requirements and Procedures for the Senior Recital

Once students are registered for the class - Senior Project, MUS 490, these procedures must be followed in scheduling a recital.

Students are expected to be fully aware of the full Policy on Senior Music Recitals.

B.M. Jazz Studies – Full or Joint Recital required (register for 2 units of MUS 490)    

The Senior Recital Checklist is provided for your careful planning of this momentus capstone experience.

  • Obtain a Request for Senior Music Recital form from the department office or print one here.
  • Complete the form carefully.
  • Clear the date with your assisting musicians.
  • Obtain the appropriate signatures. Your recital is not considered officially scheduled until these are obtained in order. 
  • Due Date - Submit the completed form no later than the last day to drop classes. 
  • Recital Hearing - Repertoire must be ready to be performed for a jury of the faculty at 4 to 6 weeks prior to the recital date. Juries will take place during the repertoire classes, or at other times by special arrangement made by the student. Bring Two copies of scores, Program & Poster proofs using the online templates to the Recital Hearing. Make arrangements for your private lesson instructor and one other faculty to be present to jury the hearing. 
  • When scheduling the recital, it is also wise to schedule the dress rehearsal, since it may not be possible to do so at a later date.
  • Performance

One to two jury members will receive evaluation forms at the time of your recital that they will fill out and submit to the Department Office. Your recital grade is an average of these two grades (if two are listening). The grading criteria can be found on the SENIOR RECITAL EVALUATION FORM. Various musical qualities will be considered (e.g. intonation, phrasing, memorization, etc.). All music degree recitals must be representative of the repertoire lists and academic guidelines set forth by the private lesson instructor and are in the catalogue course descriptions for applied study.

Other Factors

  • Promote your concert.
  • Follow the Poster Guidelines. 
  • Program Template - You must follow this template to make your own program

You many wish to give brief descriptions of the historical background, performance practice, and stylistic, formal and harmonic traits of each selection on the your recital. If so, try to make your presentation exciting and appealing to your audience. You may also consider writing program notes for your recital. If so, musical examples are encouraged.

Junior Recital

Jazz Studies majors must also complete a junior recital.