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Course Information

Instructor Info:Thomas Randall
Term: 2013F
Meeting Info: Tuesday
06:30 PM - 09:20 PM Music and Dance Building RECITAL

In this performance-based introductory class, students will begin to develop the skills and techniques of jazz performance, including ensemble playing and improvisation. Students will study the forms and concepts of jazz composition and theory and apply them in the composition and performance of repertoire. They will learn to compose elements of jazz pieces and will present original work and/or arrangements in a  concert performance. This course is open to all instrumentalists and vocalists who want to acquire proficiency in the basic elements of jazz. Students are expected to have a basic music theory background (Musical Beginnings or equivalent) and reasonable proficiency on their instrument, including basic scales and rudimentary reading ability.

Course Objectives:

Students will develop skills in applying concepts of music theory to composition and performance of repertoire in the jazz tradition.

Evaluation Criteria:

Students will be evaluated on progress made in class and in the written composition work; in-class performance time and the final concert will all be assessed based on student effort, consistent growth and improvement, and cooperative ensemble attitude.

Additional Info:

Students will be required to write three original music compositions that follow specific guidelines (to be provided).  There may be additional weekly assignments focusing on aspects of theory and analysis.  Late assignments will not be accepted.  Each student will be required to prepare and lead one jazz piece or original composition in class and discuss its structural and harmonic components.  In order to receive an evaluation, students must participate in the final concert, hand in all assigned work on time, and participate fully in class. 


Attendance will be taken and class will begin promptly at 6:30.  The classroom will be open at 6:15 for set-up, tuning, etc.; chronic lateness will be treated as absence.  Students with more than two absences will not receive an evaluation for this class.  Please note that class will meet on Tuesday, November 26, and that attendance at this class is mandatory; please make your Thanksgiving travel plans accordingly.

 Basic music literacy and elementary knowledge of music theory are required for this class (Musical Beginnings or equivalent) as well as basic proficiency on an instrument.  Each student must purchase a music manuscript book (available from the Book Store) and bring it to class every week.