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Jazz Studies

Overview

As one of the first free-standing jazz studies departments in the nation, the USC Thornton School was a pioneer in the development of an academic curriculum dedicated to the one true American musical art form. With a world-renown faculty, the Jazz Studies department prepares young musicians for success in the professional performance arena. Recent graduates have assumed prominent roles in jazz and popular music across the nation. The USC Thornton Jazz Studies department consistently ranks in the top three to four in the nation in major jazz periodicals.

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Spotlights

event calendar

Upcoming events

  • Jazz Night featuring the USC Thornton Concert Jazz Orchestra

    Jason Goldman leads the Concert Jazz Orchestra in their popular Video Game Concert, featuring original musical arrangements from some of the most well-known and loved video games.

    Ground Zero Performance Cafe (TRO)

  • Jazz Night featuring ALAJE

    ALAJE, the USC Thornton Afro-Latin American Jazz Ensemble led by Aaron Serfaty, headlines this ongoing series featuring USC Thornton student jazz ensembles.

    Ground Zero Performance Cafe (TRO)

  • Jazz Honors Combo

    The Jazz Honors Combo, a select group of USC Thornton jazz musicians led by Jason Goldman, presents an evening of standards and original compositions.

    Carson Center (CTV)

  • Jazz Night

    Students from Thornton's Jazz Studies department present an evening of contemporary jazz as part of an ongoing series.

    Ground Zero Performance Cafe (TRO)

  • USC Thornton Jazz Orchestra: People Music

    The USC Thornton Jazz Orchestra premieres a new composition by music director Bob Mintzer in a special collaboration between Thornton's Classical and Contemporary Music Divisions. The three-movement work, People Music, strives to find a "meeting place between jazz and groove music and an orchestral sensibility, where both genres are acknowledged in a respectful way." People Music was originally commissioned by the jazz arm of the Vienna Philharmonic.

    Carson Center (CTV)

  • USC Thornton Concert Jazz Orchestra: Kind of Blue

    Jason Goldman leads the Concert Jazz Orchestra in a program of original arrangements from the biggest jazz album of all-time, Miles Davis' Kind of Blue. Considered by most critics to be the greatest jazz recording, the album is comprised of five iconic pieces: So What, Freddy Freeloader, Blue in Green, All Blues, and Flamenco Sketches.

    Carson Center (CTV)

  • New Jazz Showcase

    The Division of Contemporary Music presents an evening showcasing the new jazz sound evolving at USC Thornton, featuring original tunes written, arranged and performed by students.

    Ground Zero Performance Cafe (TRO)

  • ALAJE

    Led by Aaron Serfaty, the USC Thornton Afro-Latin American Jazz Ensemble (ALAJE) presents an evening of jazz standards reinvented with a focus on the rhythmic traditions of Brazil and Cuba.

    Carson Center (CTV)

  • Jazz Night featuring the Jazz Honors Combo

    The Jazz Honors Combo, a select group of USC Thornton jazz musicians led by Jason Goldman, presents an evening of standards and original compositions.

    Ground Zero Performance Cafe (TRO)

  • Studio/Jazz Guitar Ensemble Showcase

    Thornton's Studio/Jazz Guitar program presents its guitar ensembles in an annual showcase.

    Carson Center (CTV)

  • Jazz Night featuring the USC Thornton Jazz Orchestra

    The USC Thornton Jazz Orchestra, led by music director Bob Mintzer, presents an evening of standards and original compositions as part of an ongoing series of contemporary jazz.

    Ground Zero Performance Cafe (TRO)

  • Jazz Night featuring Non-Major Combos

    Students enrolled in Thornton's elective courses or earning Minors in Jazz Studies present an evening of contemporary jazz as part of an ongoing series.

    Ground Zero Performance Cafe (TRO)


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    Videos


    news archive

    News

    Daedelus

    Daedelus creates original score for Chaplin film

    November 21, 2016

    USC Thornton Jazz Studies alumnus Alfred Darlington (’00), known professionally as Daedelus, recently presented an original electronic music score to Charlie Chaplin’s 1917 silent film, “Easy Street.” The live performance was part of a film series at Fig@7th known as UnSilent Cinema, in which contemporary musicians perform original accompaniment to… read more

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    Ensembles

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    Faculty