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Jazz Recitals

Studio Music and Jazz majors are required to give a half-recital (Mus. Gen. 301) near the end of their junior year and a full recital (Mus. Gen. 401) near the end of their senior year. The jazz recital is intended for use by jazz majors only. Departmental policy states that the student must be enrolled for applied music lessons during the semester in which the recital is to be given. Juniors must have passed a 300 level jazz jury by the semester preceding the semester in which the junior recital is planned. The student must also pass the level two scale proficiency exam and the level three sight-reading proficiency exam to be eligible to perform a junior jazz recital. Seniors must have passed a 400 level jazz jury by the semester preceding the semester in which the senior recital is planned. The student must also pass the level four sight-reading proficiency exam to be eligible to perform a senior jazz recital. A recital should reflect all aspects of the student's consummate development, such as improvisation, composing and arranging, ensemble playing, leadership, programming, instrumental ability, versatility (stylistic and perhaps instrumental), and the ability to select and organize assisting players.

The jazz recital should be approached chiefly as a solo recital, focusing on a single player rather than as an ensemble recital (this approach might be moderated somewhat in the case of bassists and drummers, since their function as members of the rhythm section carries considerable responsibility). Under no circumstances should the recital be approached in the manner of a loosely organized jam session. Brief solos by supporting players may be included, but they must not dilute the overall effect of a solo recital.

The assisting players will generally comprise a small group (rhythm section plus optional horns), but a variety in this respect, such as unaccompanied solos, duos, trios, or even large ensemble selections, is also welcome.

Original compositions and arrangements by the student giving the recital are most appropriate, though other well-selected tunes from established jazz artists/composers are also appropriate, especially if their inclusion would promote a well-rounded program, in terms of vehicle-types and tempos. The program may include some classical literature, if the student's background and training seems to dictate that it would be appropriate.
The student is responsible for all mechanics of the recital. A check list is provided to aid the student in this respect. Items which are not shown in the list, but for which the student is nevertheless responsible include selection and organization of assisting personnel, scheduling and conducting rehearsals, staging, lighting, sound system, recording (optional), and seeing that all performers are in appropriate attire for the recital.

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