SU Jazz Program Overview
Big band and small jazz ensembles are open to all SU students by audition. Small ensembles are open to all instrumentation, including voice. Performances take place at a variety of venues both on and off campus, and include outdoor campus parties, formal concerts, modern composer features, swing dances and annual openings for the Central PA Friends of Jazz—the the most recent of which featured the big band opening for Freddie Cole in Harrisburg.
The repertoire covers a broad spectrum of styles ranging from Basie and Ellington to modern jazz composers such as Bob Brookmeyer, Maria Schneider, Guillermo Klein and select student works. Regular guest artists coach and perform alongside students. Recent guests include Terri Lyne Carrington, Victor Goines, Ted Poor, Tim Miller, Donny McCaslin, and Vardan Ovsepian.
In addition to the select performance ensembles, a lab band affords inexperienced jazz players a coached opportunity to develop jazz fundamentals.
SU Small Jazz Ensembles (SUSJE)
Chamber ensembles of like-leveled jazz players, open to all instrumentation including voice, three to four performances annually, including MLK Convocation and the SU HS Jazz Festival.
SU Big Band (SUBB)
16 to 20 musicians, standard instrumentation, four to six performances annually, including Honors Band Weekend and the SU HS Jazz Festival.
SU Jazz Outreach (SUJO)
Chamber ensemble of the most experienced jazz students rehearsing and performing with the director and other experienced professionals with and for area high school communities, 2-4 performances annually.
SU Jazz Workshop Ensemble (SUJWE)
Lab ensemble of minimally experienced aspiring jazz players, open to all instrumentation including voice.