Dr. Kevin Kjos
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Dr. Kevin Kjos is the Director of Jazz Studies at Kutztown University, where he directs Jazz Ensembles I & II, and is Professor of Trumpet.
He is the author of Teaching Through Imitation, A Jazz Ensemble Guide and Reflections on the Teaching of William Adam, a work analyzing the teaching methods and techniques of William Adam through interviews with Mr. Adam and research into techniques of pedagogy, both non-academic and academic, including ideas found in such seemingly divergent areas as Eastern and Western philosophy and athletics. Both books are available through Really Good Music Publishing.
As Director of Jazz Studies, Dr. Kjos has created the Jazz Masters Series, a clinician series that has featured some of the best jazz performers in the world, including Randy Brecker, the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra, the Mingus Big Band, the Count Basie Orchestra, the Cyrus Chestnut Trio, Chris Brubeck, Loren Stillman, Jeff Hirschfield, Adam Kolker, Allison Miller, Gary Versace, Scott Wendholt, Ray Drummond, Bruce Barth, Steve Wilson, Victor Lewis, John Riley, Ingrid Jensen, Jon Wikan, and many others.
He also created the Jazz and Lunch Outreach series that invites high school and junior high jazz ensembles onto the KU campus for a day of clinics by KU jazz faculty and students, and a pizza lunch while listening to a rehearsal of the top KU Jazz Ensemble.
KU Jazz Ensemble I, under the direction of Dr. Kjos, releases a CD every year, recorded in the KU recording studio and engineered by Paul Wickliffe of Skyline Studios. To date, the ensemble has released 12 CDs with both modern and traditional big band jazz and combos, many of which are available through Sea Breeze Records.
As a leader, conductor, and composer, Dr. Kjos was founder and director of the Minneapolis based Cedar Avenue Big Band and the Sound Exploration Ensemble, a new music group in which he performed and composed. As a trumpet player, Dr. Kjos has performed in a wide variety of styles from orchestral, to rhythm and blues, to jazz, performing with David Baker, the Camarata Chamber Orchestra, Scott Lee, Allison Miller, the Great Lakes Navy Band, the Dominic Spera Big Band, Harold Jones, Nick Schneider, Ringling Brothers, Barnum and Bailey Circus, and many others.
Dr. Kjos has held prior appointments at Carleton College; the University of Wisconsin, Eau Claire; and the University of Minnesota at Moorhead. He holds a Doctorate of Music in Brass Pedagogy from Indiana University, Bloomington; and a Masters of Music in Trumpet Performance from the University of Wisconsin, Eau Claire. He has studied jazz styles and techniques with renowned jazz educators David Baker, Robert Baca, and Dominic Spera. His trumpet teachers include Robert Baca, John Rommel, and esteemed brass pedagogue William Adam.