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.

event calendar

Upcoming events

  • Jazz Forum with Bennie Maupin

    Iconic clarinetist Bennie Maupin leads USC Thornton students in a Jazz forum. Please note: this event has moved to Carson Center.

    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, headlines this ongoing showcase of contemporary jazz at Carson Center.

    Carson Center (CTV)

  • Jazz Night

    Students from Thornton's jazz programs showcase contemporary jazz works.

    The Songwriter’s Theater

  • Jazz Night featuring the USC Thornton Jazz Orchestra and Ricky Peterson

    The USC Thornton Jazz Orchestra shines with special guest Ricky Peterson on organ and vocals. A longtime collaborator with artists such as Dave Sanborn and Prince, Peterson is currently touring with Fleetwood Mac.

    Carson Center (CTV)

  • Jazz Night featuring the USC Thornton Concert Jazz Orchestra

    The USC Thornton Concert Jazz Orchestra headlines an evening of contemporary jazz with a tribute to Nat King Cole's to celebrate the iconic musician's 100th birthday.

    Carson Center (CTV)

  • Jazz Forum with Peter Erksine

    Legendary drummer and USC Thornton faculty member Peter Erksine leads students in a Jazz forum. Please note: this event has moved to Carson Center.

    Carson Center (CTV)

  • Jazz Night featuring Vocal Jazz and Studio Guitar Duos

    Duos from Thornton's jazz and studio guitar programs team up to showcase contemporary jazz works.

    The Songwriter’s Theater

  • Jazz Night featuring the USC Thornton Jazz Orchestra and Vince Mendoza with guest vocalist Luciana Souza

    The USC Thornton Jazz Orchestra, led by music director Bob Mintzer, and guest vocalist Luciana Souza present an evening of standards and original compositions including new works for large jazz ensemble by faculty member Vince Mendoza.

    Carson Center (CTV)

  • Jazz Night

    Students from Thornton's jazz programs showcase contemporary jazz works.

    The Songwriter’s Theater

  • Jazz Night featuring ALAJE

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

    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, headlines this ongoing showcase of contemporary jazz at Carson Center.

    Carson Center (CTV)

  • Jazz Night: USC Thornton Concert Jazz Orchestra

    The USC Thornton Concert Jazz Orchestra headlines an evening of contemporary jazz featuring main title themes from famous cartoons.

    Carson Center (CTV)


  • more videos

    Videos


    news archive

    News

    Black and white photo of alumnus Alfred Darlington

    Daedelus to release new album, the Bittereinders, on Brainfeeder

    September 18, 2019

    USC Thornton Jazz Studies alumnus Alfred Darlington (’00), widely known as Daedelus, will release a new album on Sept. 20. The Bittereinders will close out his End of Empire musical trilogy, which also includes Righteous Fists of Harmony (2010) and The Light Brigade (2014). Like the previous installments of his… read more

    more news

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    Ensembles

    all USC Thornton faculty

    Faculty