Jazz Pedagogy Workshop | Webster University

Jazz Pedagogy Workshop

Teaching the Beginning Improviser
June 24-26, 2013

Lower-price registration extended to June 5!

How can a jazz ensemble director or private teacher most effectively provide the skills and concepts needed by the beginning improviser?

Jazz faculty membersThis workshop will offer specific training for the music educator: the swing concept and issues of jazz phrasing, "first step" disciplines for soloists in big band and combo, a practical and user friendly introduction to jazz theory, methods of teaching improvisation through the works of a composer (Duke Ellington), chordal concepts and comping for pianists and guitarists, and the uses of current technology in teaching improvisation.

All sessions will be highly interactive and will taught by some of St. Louis' most respected and experienced jazz educators and performers.


Workshop Faculty 

Paul DeMarinis, Director of Jazz Studies, Webster University
Steve Schenkel, Full Time Jazz Faculty Member, Webster University
Kim Portnoy, Director of Composition an Jazz Faculty Member, Webster University
Carolbeth True, Adjunct Jazz Faculty Member, Webster University
Christopher Braig, Adjunct Jazz Faculty Member, Webster University
Phil Dunlap, Director of Education, Jazz St. Louis

Workshop Schedule

Monday, June 24

Welcome and overview of workshop (9:00-9:30)

Session #1: Swing sessions for the beginning improviser; learning play to the rhythmic heartbeat of jazz (Paul DeMarinis) (9:30-12:00)

Session #2: The beginning pianist in the big band; interpreting chord symbology, comping function, and soloing (Carolbeth True) (1:00-2:30)

Session #3: The beginning wind improviser in big band; finding a way into chord changes and soloing (Paul DeMarinis) (2:45-4:00)

Tuesday, June 25

Session #1: Toward a grammar of jazz; the beginning improviser in the practice room. (Phil Dunlap) (9:00-12:00)
Session #2: The beginning jazz guitarist in big band; reading notation and chord symbols, comping function, and soloing (Steve Schenkel) (1:00-2:30)

Session #3: Introducing jazz theory (Kim Portnoy) (2:45-4:00)

Wednesday, June 26

Session #1: Teaching improvisation through a composer: Duke Ellington (Steve Schenkel) (9:00-10:30)

Session #2: Transcription for beginners; why transcribe and how to do it (Paul DeMarinis) (10:45-12:00)

Session #3: Transcription for beginners; what to transcribe (Paul DeMarinis) (1:00-2:00)

Session #4: Using current technology in teaching improvisation (Christopher Braig) (2:15-3:30)

Session #5: “Puttin' It Together”: A workshop summary (3:30-4:00)