It’s an amazing opportunity to study from the greats, in a place where inspiration and electricity abound.
~ Jazz Institute participant

Ages 12 – 17, by Audition

Prerequisite: 18 months instruction

July 23 – August 4, 2017
Stanford University Campus
On-campus housing with included meal plan available, or commute from off-campus

Program Highlights

  • Curriculum advances as students advance, no repeated content
  • Classes led by world-class jazz artists and marquee faculty

Program Focus

  • Jazz Camp structure in first week; Jazz Institute professional focus in second week
  • Exclusive content during first week and on Saturday
  • Small combo, one-on-a-part improvisation and performance
  • Instrument-specific and vocal masterclasses
  • Jazz theory, applied theory and many other classes
  • One private lesson during first week
  • Daily combo rehearsals led by some of the best jazz artists and educators in the world
  • Free admission to nightly Stanford Jazz Festival concerts
  • Showcase performances on first Friday and second Thursday nights

Advanced Package

For young musicians with advanced jazz experience, SJW’s 2-week Advanced Package program features a 13-day immersion with motivated students from around the world. SJW’s inter-generational approach gives unparalleled access to some of the greatest jazz musicians performing today, so young players can learn directly from living legends, touring artists, and recording pros. During the first week, the curriculum is structured and participants follow a special advanced track in the Jazz Camp. Special classes are designed for Advanced Package participants during the first week and on Saturday.
During the second week, students choose their own classes from a curriculum that focuses on improvisation and includes small ensemble playing, master classes, and performance opportunities, as well as classes in theory, musicianship, arranging, Afro-Latin jazz, jazz history, and more. Unique to the Jazz Institute are the Special Presentations given by artist faculty on topics in which they specialize or in which they have particular experience (see list below). Admission to nightly Stanford Jazz Festival performances is included, and there are several jam sessions each evening.

Advanced Package Classes and Activities:

  • Jazz theory – focuses on harmony, song forms, scales, and advanced concepts
  • Musicianship – focuses on ear training and rhythm exercises
  • Masterclass – virtuoso faculty members teach advanced techniques
  • Special presentations and demonstrations – SJW faculty relate their experiences as leading artists in jazz, perform live demonstrations, and answer questions about what it’s like to study, perform, compose, and live a life in jazz
  • Small ensembles / combos – daily rehearsals in small combos directed by faculty artists
  • Private lessons – every student receives a private lesson with SJW faculty
  • Jam sessions – fun, optional playing sessions with other students and faculty
  • Afternoon free time – relax, practice or take part in the talent show, dorm dance, ice cream social, sports, arts and crafts, and jam sessions.

Special events from previous years:

  • The art of creativity, with Chick Corea (2014)
  • The art of the trio, with Chris Potter, Eric Harland, and Larry Grenadier (2013)
  • Afro-Caribbean concepts for jazz players, with Brian Lynch (2013)
  • Wow, it is so much fun playing with you! with Matt Wilson (2012)
  • Zen and the art of jazz improvisation with Charles McPherson (2012)
  • Now that we can play jazz, what do we do? with the Bad Plus (2011)
  • 52nd Street themes: an open rehearsal and discussion featuring Joe Lovano (2011)
  • Narrative flow in jazz improv with Joshua Redman (2010)
  • Anatomy of a composition with Dave Douglas (2010)

Faculty