Office of Public Affairs

(315) 312-2265

May 26, 2004


    OSWEGO -- High school students will have the opportunity to earn college credit while interacting with and learning from master players during the first-ever Jazz Institute at SUNY Oswego, July 25 to 31.

    The institute is the brainchild of Richard Holland, an assistant professor of music at SUNY Oswego. He said the opportunities for hands-on learning, diverse experience of faculty and nightly performances will make the Jazz Institute a beneficial experience for student players.

    "I think we're the only institute of this kind in Central New York, offering an on-campus experience where students will be in residence with faculty," Holland said.

    All attendees will join two groups during the institute -- one of two big bands (a 17-piece big band or a 10-piece repertory orchestra) and one of three combos (a seven-piece band, a jazz sextet or a jazz quintet). These group sessions and rehearsals will allow students to receive hands-on instruction from professionals while learning to interact with fellow musicians, Holland said. The bands will play for parents and the public on Saturday, July 31.

    Classes span jazz theory and arranging, jazz history, jazz improvisation and musical instrument digital interface (MIDI) software. Completion of the program will earn students one college credit.

    The faculty-in-residence teaching classes and leading performances bring a variety of experiences from the music industry that will show students potential career tracks in the musical field, Holland said.
    Presenters will include Holland on trumpet, big band, jazz history and combos; Grammy-nominated saxophonist Kerry Strayer on combos, improvisation and theory; Scott Gwinnell on jazz piano, MIDI and combos; Carl Cafagna on saxophones, repertory orchestras, combos and improvisation; Earlie Braggs on trombone, combos and improvisation; David Rosin on rhythm section techniques, bass and combos; and Marion Felder on drums, percussion master classes and combos.

    "Every day, we'll also have a unique faculty workshop or master class with a different faculty member talking about everything from the music business to their area of expertise," Holland said. "We wanted to make everything as interactive as possible so students can ask questions and learn more about the music business."

    SUNY Oswego's Office of Continuing Education sponsors the first edition of what Holland hopes will become an annual summer tradition. This year's event is a pilot, but organizers hope to expand to a two-week institute next year if the response remains encouraging.

    The institute has a rolling deadline, and a few spaces are still available. For more information on the SUNY Oswego Jazz Institute, visit or call the Office of Continuing Education at 312-2270.
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