The Jazz Studies Program, a Bachelor of Music curriculum developed by Tom Wolfe and directed by Chris Kozak, is a program dedicated to the detailed study of jazz performance and arranging/composition. This degree, established on the firm foundation of the Arranging Program developed by Prof. Steve Sample, is on the cutting edge of the curricula needed by versatile musicians.
The Jazz Studio is a state of the art digital multi-track recording studio which uses ProTools by Digidesign recording software via MAC G4 power plant. Also available is the Improvisation Lab, a MAC lab incorporating sequencing, notation, and improvisation software for personal practice time. Compose a film score and sync it to the video or format your score with the notation software and hear it played back. The goal of the Jazz Studies Program is to prepare you for the day to day demands of the music industry. It is also a strong foundational degree for continued graduate studies. Our graduates have performed professionally in groups such as: Glenn Miller Orchestra, Woody Herman’s Thundering Herd, The Temptations, Lee Greenwood, Tommy Dorsey Big Band, and The Blues Brothers to name a few. Many of our graduates have gone on to write professionally, such as: composer for artists like Della Reese, The Temptations, film scores for the History and Nature channels, been professional copyists, orchestrators, and edited music for companies like CPP Belwin.
The fine tradition of our ensembles continues in the Jazz Ensemble, directed by Chris Kozak. Also offered is a combo program, coached by Tom Wolfe, Mark Lanter, and Jazz Studies GTA’s, which provides the opportunity to perform in a small group setting. Our award winning jazz performance groups have performed throughout the United States at festivals such as: Notre Dame Collegiate Jazz Festival, Wichita Jazz Festival, Mobile Jazz Festival, and New York University Jazz Festival. The ensemble has also performed in France and the Carribean. Some of the excellent guests and clinicians of our Jazz Program have included Randy Brecker, Dizzy Gillespie, Rick Margitza, Gene Bertoncini, Jamey Aebersold, Jerry Tachoir, Birch Johnson, Gunther Schuller, Ken Watters, Cleveland Eaton, the Lincoln Center Sextet and Jimmy Walker.
Jazz Studies Faculty:
- Christopher Kozak – Assistant Professor and Director of Jazz Studies, Electric and Double Bass
- Tom Wolfe – Associate Dean of Arts and Sciences, Professor of Jazz Studies, Guitar
- Jonathan Noffsinger – Associate Professor of Saxophone and Jazz Studies
- Mark Lanter – Instructor of Jazz Studies and Drum Set
Additional Applied Faculty:
- Jonathan Whitaker, Assitant Professor of Trombone
- Demondrae Thurman, Brass Area Coordinator; Associate Professor of Euphonium and Tuba
- Eric Yates, Assistant Professor of Trumpet
For information about audition please visit the following link:
For information about auditiong for Jazz Ensmble and Combos, please visit the following link: Jazz Ensemble/Combo Audition Info