Performance opportunities are plentiful at the UW. In addition to the excellent UW ensembles there are myriad opportunities outside the UW. Due to the UW’s location in Seattle, students have access to one of the most creative, vibrant and healthy music scenes in the country.
An ensemble approach to the teaching of jazz improvisation and ear training, designed to develop students skills and knowledge of playing in a small jazz combo. Students in Jazz Combos participate in performances held over two consecutive nights each quarter in Brechemin Auditorium.
There are multiple Jazz combos created each quarter, all of which are coached by Jazz Faculty. Students are placed by the jazz faculty based on their audition performance.
For Jazz combo auditions, students will be asked to perform pre-selected jazz standards, solo over chord changes, and sight read. Lead sheets and charts will be provided for all players at the audition. For more information contact professor Cuong Vu.
The Modern Band, led by Cuong Vu, is a jazz rooted-ensemble with a primary focus on repertoire encompassing innovative trends in jazz of the last decade. Ensemble members are exposed to a wide range of musical influences that have pushed the boundaries of jazz as an art form. Students are encouraged to write original material for the ensemble and to apply the musical innovations of the artists of their generation to the sound of the group and its repertoire.
For the ensemble audition, students are encouraged to bring repertoire of their choosing to perform solo or with any combination of instrumentalists that are available at the time. Students should audition with what they are most comfortable with, however improvisation in a modern style of your choosing and/or free improvisation are recommended. Students may further be asked to perform an improvisation with any combination of musicians that will be auditioning.
**Examples of possible audition repertoire to choose from include a jazz standard, a Monk or an Ornette original, a selection from Schoenberg’s “Book of Hanging Gardens” or an Ives “Song”, a Beatles classic to a Radiohead tune, to any piece from one of today’s musical artists of personal inspiration. Student originals are encouraged.
For more information contact professor Cuong Vu
Studio Jazz Ensemble
The award winning University of Washington Studio Jazz Ensemble aspires to set
the highest standards of excellence in the performance of jazz in the large ensemble
setting. The bands is responsible for performing the latest in big band material
while maintaining the roots of the region’s healthy jazz tradition. The ensemble is
open by audition to both music majors and non-music majors and is designed to
provide professional training in the full range of musical styles inherent to jazz.
The Studio Big Band audition will consist of some sight reading and improvising. For information contact professor Paul Harshman.