School of Music

BM in Performance - Jazz Studies

This degree concentration is designed as foundation studies for those who wish to prepare for careers in jazz or commercial music performance and/or jazz instruction and those who plan to pursue graduate work in jazz studies. This program aims to instill a thorough understanding of this unique American art form and its relationship to contemporary society. Applied music, jazz improvisation, jazz arranging, jazz history, and jazz ensembles are emphasized. A basic understanding of the standards and performance opportunities for professional performance leads the student to realistic expectations for a career as a performer or teacher.

The minimum number of credits required for the degree is 120.

Music CORE 28-32 creditsCredits
Music Theory and Aural Skills (16) 
     MUT 100 Music Theory and Aural Skills 14
     MUT 101 Music Theory and Aural Skills 24
     MUT 200 Music Theory and Aural Skills 34
     MUT 201 Music Theory and Aural Skills 44
Music History (12) 
     MUH 105 Multi-Cultural Perspectives of American Popular Music 
          and Jazz3
     MUH 222 Music History Survey 13
     MUH 223 Music History Survey 23
     MUS 206 Jazz History3
Functional Piano (4) not required for pianists 
     MUS 150 Piano Class 11
     MUS 151 Piano Class 21
     MUS 252 Jazz Piano Class 11
     MUS 253 Jazz Piano Class 21
  
Applied Music 28 credits 
     Private Lessons (8 semesters)24
     MUP 390 Junior Recital0
     MUP 490 Capstone: Senior Recital4
     MUS 442 Recital Class (8 semesters)0

Students in the jazz concentration will divide their 24 credit hours of applied music equally between classical applied studies and jazz applied studies by taking either a 2-credit or a 1-credit lesson in each area every semester.
Jazz students must take a jazz jury each semester and a classical jury during the spring semester. They are expected to pass a level 3 jury in each area prior to giving their senior recital.

Students in the jazz concentration must satisfactorily complete a short recital in the junior year and full recital in the senior year. The junior recital should consist of 25 minutes of jazz repertoire, and the senior recital should consist of 25 minutes of jazz repertoire and 25 minutes of classical repertoire. The jazz repertoire shall demonstrate the student's skills at improvisation, composition, and arranging, and should be chosen under the guidance of their applied jazz instructor.

Ensembles 10 credits 
     Major Ensemble, non-Jazz (4 semesters)  2
            University Chorale, Chamber Singers, Concert Band
            or Symphony Orchestra
     Large Jazz Ensemble (8 semesters)4
     Chamber Jazz Ensemble (8 semesters)4

Students should take a minimum of .5 credit of the appropriate section of MUS 406 Chamber Music - Jazz during each of their first two academic years. Students who are not selected for MUS 407 Jazz Ensemble may substitute additional credits of MUS 406 Chamber Music - Jazz with permission of the director of jazz studies. Guitarists and pianists may fulfill the Major Ensemble requirement by taking MUS 452 Accompanying or any small ensemble outside the jazz idiom.

Additional Music Courses 18 credits 
     MUS 337 Jazz Arranging  3
     MUS 380 Jazz Improvisation 13
     MUS 381 Jazz Improvisation 23
     MUS 374 Jazz Pedagogy2
     Electives3
  
Additional Non-music courses 12 credits 
     One approved course from the School of Business3
     Electives6

 

Admission to the jazz degree concentration in music is based on the following criteria:

 

  1. Performance audition on the applicant's major instrument. For most instruments, one selection should be from the jazz idiom and one from the classical genre. While performing jazz selections, the candidate should demonstrate their jazz improvisation abilities.
  2. Tests of aural comprehension, rhythmic recitation, and sight singing administered individually by a member of the staff.
  3. A diagnostic written test of music fundamentals, including intervals, scales, chords, and key signatures.

Audition Information