I love the atmosphere every time I see a rehearsal. The kids not only respect and learn from the teachers, but they clearly respect and learn from one another.
— JazzED Parent

Play and perform in award-winning Big Band Ensembles under legendary local educators, alongside dedicated students from Seattle and beyond.

Although most JazzED ensembles are traditional jazz big bands, we are proud to offer opportunities to students on any instrument in the New Works Ensemble and Creative Music Orchestra OR voice in the Nina Simone Vocal Ensemble.  

Video: What it's like to be a student at JazzED.


Are you eligible?
The Big Band Ensembles are open to students in grades 5-12, with one or more years experience on their instrument. 

Students who play instruments like strings, reeds (oboe, bassoon, etc.) or non-traditional brass (like French horn) are encouraged to audition for the Creative Music Orchestra or the New Works Ensemble. These ensembles are also open to traditional jazz instruments, as well. 

Is your student brand new to music, or have less than one year of experience? Register for the Jazz Prep Ensembles, no audition required.

Do you sing? Audition for the Nina Simone Vocal Ensemble


Your Audition
Every student must audition to be placed in an ensemble. Audition weekend is November 18 - 19. Your audition date and time slot depends on your grade.

There is a $25 audition fee. If the fee is a financial burden, please use the code WAIVER at registration check-out to waive the fee.

If you would like to audition for the Creative Music Orchestra or New Works Ensemble, register for Sunday only. To audition for the Nina Simone Vocal Ensemble, Saturday only. 

Need a Make-up Audition?
While it is in your best interests to audition on the designated day, we understand that conflicts come up. Register as normal, so that you're in our system, then email britt@seattlejazzed.org to be added to the make-up day list. The make-up day will be after audition weekend but is not confirmed as of yet. 

Your Placement
Your ensemble placement will be emailed after auditions, within 1-2 weeks. If you accept your placement, you will then register for your ensemble, select a payment plan and/or apply for financial aid at that time. Weekly rehearsals (and sectionals for certain ensembles) begin in January. 

Need to Prepare?
Students in grades 5-8 with at least one year of experience on their instrument can sign up for Fall Jazz Club or Girls Jazz Club. Both clubs meet several times in the fall. And good news! Club tuition will be applied toward your Big Band Ensembles tuition. Click here to learn more about Fall Jazz Club and Girls Jazz Club. 


    Students experiment, take risks and innovate. The instructors are top notch and know how to bring out the best in students.
    — JazzED Parent

    Rehearsal Schedule & Performances
    Rehearsals run weekly January - May 2018. The first four levels also have five sectionals. Every ensemble has at least two performances. See ensemble descriptions below for days and times. You can also check the program calendar.

    Rehearsal Location
    Ensembles rehearse at the MLK FAME Community Center at 3201 E Republican St in the Madison Valley neighborhood.

    2017-2018 Tuition
    $895 (approx. $20 per instruction hour). Monthly payment plans and financial aid are always available.

    Financial Aid
    If the tuition is too expensive for you, please apply for financial aid online by November 30. We are committed to making JazzED accessible for everyone. 40% of JazzED families receive some amount of financial aid. If you have any questions about the process, contact us.


    Jazz Field Trip to New York City
    The Quincy Jones Ensemble and the New Works Ensemble will embark on a 4-day tour of New York City in June 2018. The tour includes clinics with professional musicians, music school tours and historic venues and performances. There is an additional cost to go on the trip but financial aid and payment plans are available. Attendance is not required but highly encouraged. This is the last year we'll go New York City for a while. Our next jazz field trip trip will be to either San Francisco or Chicago. Learn more about the trip HERE.


    My son’s love of playing was beginning to fade. JazzED revitalized him.
    — JazzED Parent

    Our Ensembles

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    Louis Armstrong Ensemble

    Jazz musicians know that we owe it all to “Pops”, the father of jazz music. In the Louis Armstrong Ensemble, we lay the foundation for our jazz education, focusing on fundamentals and getting down to basics. This group is for students who are new to jazz, but have some experience on their instruments. This is the 1st level big band.

    Rehearsals
    Weekly on Saturdays from 10:00 AM - 12:00 AM
    January 6, 2019 - May 19, 2018.

    Group Sectionals

    • Brass, 7:00-8:00 PM, Monday 1/8, 1/15, 1/22, 1/29, 2/5
    • Rhythm, 7:00-8:00 PM, Tuesday 1/9, 1/16, 1/23, 1/30, 2/6
    • Sax/Reeds, 7:00-8:00 PM, Wednesday 1/10, 1/17, 1/24, 1/31, 2/7

    Performances
    Sun, 3/25 - Royal Room. 4:00 PM  load in, 4:30-6:00 PM performance
    May 2018 final performance TBD

    Click here for the JazzED Calendar >


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    Count Basie Ensemble

    The modern big band has been forever shaped by Count Basie and his Orchestra. We use the concepts gleaned from his “New Testament” Band especially, as we seek to swing, swing, and swing some more! Inspired by Basie, we will focus on Blues improvisation and a band that feels good and makes us move. This is the 2nd level big band.

    Rehearsals
    Weekly on Saturdays from 12:00 PM - 2:00 PM
    January 6, 2018 - May 19, 2018

    Group Sectionals

    • Brass, 8:00-9:00 PM, Monday 1/8, 1/15, 1/22, 1/29, 2/5
    • Rhythm, 8:00-9:00 PM, Tuesday 1/9, 1/16, 1/23, 1/30, 2/6
    • Sax/Reeds, 8:00-9:00 PM, Wednesday 1/10, 1/17, 1/24, 1/31, 2/7

    Performances
    Sun, 3/18 - Royal Room. 4:00 PM  load in, 4:30-6:00 PM performance
    May 2018 final performance TBD

    Click here for the JazzED Calendar >


    Benny Goodman Ensemble

    Benny Goodman, known as the “King of Swing”, inspires us to think and act progressively. His band evolved in style to reflect classical music, pop music, and everything in between. His was the first well-known racially integrated jazz group. Forward thinking is the focus of this band, as we build on jazz fundamentals, improvisation and explore a more varied palette of jazz styles. This is the 3rd level big band. 

    Rehearsals
    Weekly on Saturdays from 2:00 PM - 4:00 PM
    January 6, 2018 - May 19, 2018

    Group Sectionals - Feb & March

    • Brass, 7:00-8:00 PM, Monday 2/12, 2/26, 3/5, 3/12, 3/19
    • Rhythm, 7:00-8:00 PM, Tuesday 2/13, 2/27, 3/6, 3/13, 3/20
    • Sax/Reeds, 7:00-8:00 PM, Wednesday 2/14, 2/28, 3/7, 3/14, 3/21

    Performances
    Sun, 3/11 - Royal Room. 4:00 PM  load in, 4:30-6:00 PM performance
    May 2018 final performance TBD

    Click here for the JazzED Calendar >


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    Melba Liston Ensemble

    Trailblazing Melba Liston was the first woman trombonist of the big band era and a performer in the emerging bebop scene. Her bebop sensibilities  - harmonic, groovy and lyrical - influenced her big band composing and arranging…….this big band does the same! This is the 4th level big band.

    Rehearsals
    Weekly on Sundays from 12:00 PM - 2:00 PM
    January 7, 2018 - May 20, 2018

    Group Sectionals - Feb & March

    • Brass, 8:00-9:00 PM, Monday 2/12, 2/26, 3/5, 3/12, 3/19
    • Rhythm, 8:00-9:00 PM, Tuesday 2/13, 2/27, 3/6, 3/13, 3/20
    • Sax/Reeds, 8:00-9:00 PM, Wednesday 2/14, 2/28, 3/7, 3/14, 3/21

    Performances
    Sun, 3/4 - Royal Room. 4:00 PM  load in, 4:30-6:00 PM performance
    May 2018 final performance TBD 

    Click here for the JazzED Calendar >


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    Dizzy Gillespie Ensemble

    Virtuosic. Complex. Mischievous. Revolutionary. Dizzy Gillespie - with bebop running through his veins - brought Afro-Cuban music to the big band. We honor that contribution here. This is the 5th level big band.

    Rehearsals
    Weekly on Sundays from 2:00 PM - 4:00 PM
    January 7, 2018 - May 20, 2018

    Performances
    Sun, 3/18 - Royal Room. 4:00 PM  load in, 4:30-6:00 PM performance
    May 2018 final performance TBD

    Click here for the JazzED Calendar >


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    Quincy Jones Ensemble

    The “Seattle sound” doesn’t just mean grunge music. We celebrate Seattle-ite Quincy Jones and his ongoing contribution to music, particularly his writing for Count Basie, Duke Ellington, Gene Krupa, Dizzy Gillespie, and Lionel Hampton. It all comes together right here. This is the 6th level big band. 

    Rehearsals
    Weekly on Sundays from 4:00 PM - 6:00 PM
    January 7, 2018 - May 20, 2018

    Performances
    Sun, 3/4 - Royal Room. 4:00 PM  load in, 4:30-6:00 PM performance
    May 2018 final performance TBD

    June Tour
    This ensemble will travel in early June 2018. Exact dates announced shortly. Additional trip financial aid will be available. 

    Click here for the JazzED Calendar >


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    Creative Music Orchestra

    Directed by Wayne Horvitz

    Open to all instruments (and we mean it! Viola, bassoon, French horn, etc.) This is the perfect ensemble for students of intermediate to advanced ability and beginning to intermediate improvisation skill. Students explore improvisation and different genres, from jazz and pop, blues, funk, classical and world music. Grades 6-12.

    Rehearsals
    Weekly on Wednesdays from 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM
    January 10, 2018 - May 16, 2018

    Performances
    Sun, 3/11 - Royal Room. 4:00 PM  load in, 4:30-6:00 PM performance
    May 2018 final performance TBD

    Click here for the JazzED Calendar >


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    New Works Ensemble

    Directed by Wayne Horvitz

    The New Works Ensemble organizes high school students into a group that explores the boundaries of jazz and welcomes instrumentation not traditionally part of jazz performance. Grades 9-12.

    Rehearsals
    Weekly on Tuesdays from 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM
    January 9, 2018 - May 15, 2018

    Performances
    Tues, 2/13 - Royal Room. 7-9 PM performance (in lieu of rehearsal)
    Sun, 4/15 - Royal Room. 4:00 PM  load in, 4:30-6:00 PM performance
    May 2018 final performance TBD

    June Tour
    This ensemble will travel in early June 2018. Exact dates announced shortly. Additional trip financial aid will be available. 

    Click here for the JazzED Calendar >


    When we play we don’t just read the music, we create it.
    — JazzED Student

    Audition Preparation
    Students in grades 5-8 with at least one year of experience on their instrument can sign up for Fall Jazz Club or Girls Jazz Club. Both clubs meet several times in the fall. And good news! Club tuition will be applied toward your Big Band Ensembles tuition.

    • Fall Jazz Club directed by Ricardo Luna
      Catch up from summer vacation and refresh your music skills before Big Band Ensemble auditions in November. A great option for students who were in Louis Armstrong Ensemble, Mary Lou Williams Ensemble or Count Basie Ensemble last year. 
      Saturdays: 9/23, 9/30, 10/7, 10/21, 11/4, 11/11
      10:00 AM- 12:00 PM
      $120
       
    • Girls Jazz Club directed by Kelly Clingan
      Kelly will work with students on solo strategies, technique, getting a big sound and confidence in playing your parts. This will be a fun, positive, student-driven class.
      Thursdays: 10/19, 10/26, 11/2, 11/9, 11/16
      7:00-9:00 PM
      $100