Jazz Instrumental Music (winds/strings/brass/piano/percussion)
The Jazz Division is designed to create not only a proficient jazz performer, but a well-educated and literate musician. Students are taught scales, chord vocabulary, and fundamental stylistic elements of various periods of jazz through specific repertoire of jazz literature. Students are expected to memorize a minimum of five songs with solos each semester and perform these works in a combo setting in the weekly student performance class. Also, students are taught via books, handouts, famous recordings, performance videos, and various guest artist workshops about the great jazz artists and their significant contributions to jazz history. Students also learn about the masterworks of classical music and study comparisons in the various styles.
Audition Expectations: At the NOCCA Jazz Instrumental Audition, students who are admitted to the NOCCA regular program are expected to be able to do ALL of the following:
1. ALL students should have been studying PRIVATE MUSIC LESSONS for ONE FULL YEAR with a QUALIFIED jazz instructor to have the necessary skills required to pass the NOCCA audition.
2. Play the melody and improvise with the blues scale over a basic 12-bar blues form.
Pianists and guitarists should know some basic jazz chord voicings. Students should choose one or more of the following blues tunes to perform, or you may choose another similar blues tune other than the ones listed below.
C Jam Blues (C Blues), St. Louis Blues (F Blues)
Sonny Moon for Two (Bb Blues), Tenor Madness (Bb Blues)
Blue Monk (Bb Blues), Second Line (Bb Blues)
3. Play and spell major scales, minor scales, (preferably dorian) and dominant 7th
scales (preferably mixolydian) EVENLY and ACCURATELY with PROPER FINGERINGS in keys up to 3 flats and 3 sharps. (C, F, Bb, Eb, G, D, A)
4. Play ARPEGGIOS for major, minor (preferably dorian) and dominant 7th chords
EVENLY and ACCURATELY with PROPER FINGERINGS in keys up to 3 sharps and 3 flats (C, F, Bb, Eb, G, D, A)
5. Solid knowledge of key signatures, music theory, and basic diatonic intervals for
keys up to 3 sharps and 3 flats (C, F, Bb, Eb, G, D, A)
6. Ability to sight-read a simple melody accurately (w/correct rhythm and intonation)
(Guitar players, this means you, too! Tab reading is NOT accepted.)
7. Know how to sight-read and play basic rhythm patterns accurately (basic 8th note
and simple 16th note patterns with dotted notes and simple jazz syncopations)
8. Be able to match pitches and short melodic patterns by ear (from the piano or CD)
and play them back on your instrument.
DRUMMERS: Important note!!
Drummers must also be responsible for all of the above requirements and will be asked to play scales and find notes on the piano by ear. It is strongly recommended that drummers have some experience playing the piano or some other melodic instrument. All students at NOCCA study music theory and drummers must be able to fulfill these requirements at the same level as every other student. Drummers who cannot fulfill these minimum requirements at the audition will not be admitted into the program.
Students currently in 8-11th grades are eligible to apply.