The W&J Jazz Ensemble is an elite group of student musicians from departments and majors across the college. The ensemble performs frequently on campus at Olin Fine Arts Center and at informal venues like the Student Union’s Ski Lodge. The Jazz Ensemble also performs at Freshman Convocation and off campus at jazz festivals and community events such as downtown Washington’s First Thursday.
The group of 14 to 18 students plays all styles of jazz including Latin, rock, funk, and swing, and collaborate often with W&J faculty and prominent guest vocalists and musicians from Pittsburgh. The ensemble also draws guest clinicians and visiting musicians such as Kenosha Kid from the W&J Arts Series.
The ensemble consists of trumpet, trombone, saxophones, guitar, bass, drums, and piano. Students who would like to participate must register and take the course for credit (1/2 course per semester). Students must also obtain permission from Jazz Ensemble director Kyle Simpson to join.
The Jazz Ensemble rehearses on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 2:30 pm to 4 pm each week and has four to five concerts each semester. Students are evaluated on attendance and active participation during rehearsals and performances.
Listen to the Jazz Ensemble’s performances online, where they can be streamed or downloaded at YouTube and SoundCloud.