Rehearsals and Literature
KU Jazz Studies features three large ensembles: Jazz Ensemble I rehearses Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays at 12:00 – 12:50; Jazz Ensemble II rehearses on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 1:30 – 2:50; and an ad hoc student-led big band, The Black Box Big Band, that meets every Monday night in the Black Box Theatre. Compositions and arrangements as performed by Count Basie, Duke Ellington, Woody Herman, Thad Jones – Mel Lewis Jazz Orchestra, the Clayton/Hamilton jazz Orchestra, and many, many others, including student compositions and arrangements.
Performance and Guests
The Jazz Ensembles have had the opportunity to perform with and receive clinics from many of the greats in jazz performance and education including the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra, the Mingus Big Band, the Count Basie Orchestra, Randy Brecker, Steve Wilson, John Riley, Tim Hagans, Scott Wendholt, Bob Mintzer, Michael Philip Mossman, Brent Wallarab, Scott Lee, Allison Miller, Mike Davis, Fred Sturm, Bob Baca, Tom Walsh, Steve Houghton, Ray Drummond, Bruce Barth, Cyrus Chestnut, Jeff Hirschfield, Bill Reichenbach, and many others.
For more information please contact Dr. Kevin Kjos.
Admission to the large ensembles is through audition. For more information, contact Kevin Kjos at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Visit the Recordings page to hear some tracks from the Kutztown Jazz Ensembles!
The KU Jazz Studies Area has several student-led Combos. These Combos range in size from vocal-guitar duets to quartets to septets. These combos meet with KU Jazz Studies Faculty Scott Lee in Master Classes held weekly.
The KU Jazz Combos perform on a formal "Combo Concert" at the end of each term. Selected combos also record selections each year on the KU Jazz Studies CDs, and perform regularly around the area.
The KU Jazz Studies Area has several student-led Jazz Combos. These groups range in size from duets to septets. Jazz Combos also meet with KU Jazz Studies Faculty Scott Lee in Master Classes held weekly.
The KU Jazz Combos perform on a formal "Combo Concert" each term. Selected combos also record selections each year on the KU Jazz Studies CDs, and perform regularly around the area.
KU Department of Music also offers a commercial music ensemble that performs music from the rock and R&B catalog, including tunes by Earth Wind and Fire, Stevie Wonder, Tower of Power, and many others.
A key component of the small groups program is featuring student compositions and arrangements of both jazz and commercial tunes.
Vocal Jazz from Kutztown University
Do you like songs written by George Gershwin, Cole Porter, Jerome Kern, Richard Rodgers and Irving Berlin? Do you like to hear them sung by groups like The Modernaires, The Four Freshmen, Manhattan Transfer, New York Voices, Lambert, Hendricks & Ross, The Hi-Los, Beachfront Property and The Ink Spots? If you do, then you'll love KU's AfterHours.
Designed after the famous vocal swing and jazz groups from the past, AfterHours specializes in standards and show tunes from the 1920s, 30s, and 40s, but jumps with ease into interpretations of tunes of the 50s and 60s and an occasional best of the newer songs.
AfterHours is the premier vocal jazz ensemble from Kutztown University in Kutztown, Pa. The group is made up of student singers and musicians majoring in a wide variety of academic disciplines, including Elementary Education, Psychology, Business, Art, Electronic Media, English, related arts and Music. Many of the members study voice, piano, or another instrument, and several take other music courses to enhance and improve their musical skills. Members are chosen through competitive auditions held twice each year.
Jazz Ensembles Audition Information
Jazz Ensembles I, II, III, and Combos
When: First week of classes each semester.
Audition Information: Auditions consist of sight reading and an optional prepared piece. The student may or may not choose to improvise. Improvisation is not a requirement for participation in jazz ensembles.