The bachelor of music in jazz studies provides professional training in all aspects of jazz music. Our faculty of artist-teachers is dedicated to expanding your creativity while providing the experience and knowledge necessary to build a career in jazz.

In today's jazz industry, musical versatility and diversity is key. With ensemble offerings, classes, guest artists, and a robust performing and recording schedule, our students are equipped to go straight from graduation into careers in performing, composing, arranging, recording and arts management.

Students can choose from any of the following areas of jazz study:

  • Bass
  • Drums
  • Guitar
  • Piano
  • Trumpet
  • Trombone
  • Voice
  • Woodwinds
  • Composing and arranging

About Our Program

Audition and Portfolio Requirements

It isn’t required, but we’d love to see and hear you ahead of time. Send an email telling us about yourself and include audio or video samples (YouTube, SoundCloud, personal website). If you send it far enough in advance, we can even have your potential studio professor give you some feedback.

For more information, visit the Jazz studio page.

  • All Instruments and Voice

    Audition on your primary instrument or voice. Prepare three contrasting pieces from the standard modern jazz canon that you feel best exemplify your talent. You will perform the "head" or main melody and then improvise upon it. We're looking for loads of jazz vocabulary as well as a stellar swinging time feel, so work up your best stuff and blow us away!

  • Composition and Arranging

    1. Submit musical scores of two contrasting works. Include audio or video recordings of those works, either digital files or links to YouTube, Soundcloud, personal website, etc.

    2. Audition on your primary instrument or voice. Prepare three contrasting pieces from the standard modern jazz canon that you feel best exemplify your talent. You will perform the "head" or main melody and then improvise upon it. We're looking for loads of jazz vocabulary as well as a stellar swinging time feel, so work up your best stuff and blow us away!

It is preferable that you audition on campus so you can see the full range of opportunities we offer. But if you can’t make the trip, you may send us an unedited video audition (no cuts made within songs). 

Degree Requirements

The bachelor of music in jazz studies consists of 194 total credits, 132 of which come from music. Students receive weekly one-on-one lessons, participate in two ensembles per quarter, and take coursework in music theory, musicology, arranging, conducting and music technology.

In addition to satisfying DU's common curriculum requirements, students must fulfill requirements for piano proficiency, sophomore performance proficiency, music beyond the primary culture, Convocation attendance, and junior and senior recitals.

See the DU Undergraduate Bulletin for full course requirements

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