When & Where

Quick Facts

  • Availability Late starts accepted
  • Course Code W23JPMA02C
  • Suitable For 19 year olds and up are permitted on this course

What you will learn

An introduction to Big Band playing for saxophone, clarinet, brass, and rhythm section (piano, bass guitar, drums) players, with basic instrumental skills (Grade 3-4 ABRSM) and little or no experience in ensemble playing. Please note that the piano and drum chair for this term are taken.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this course, you will be able to:

  • play in the jazz idiom
  • play and understand some simple jazz arrangements
  • understand your particular role within a large jazz ensemble
  • play simple rhythmic patterns
  • read simple arrangements
  • play with other musicians
  • Improvise over simple chord changes.


  • Full fee
  • Concession fee
  • Class format and activities

    As a member of the Beginners Big Band, you will rehearse and work on a selected number of pieces chosen by the conductor. As part of the class you will work on improving your sight-reading and your phrasing in the jazz idiom. Occasionally you will be working in sections. In order to ensure that you make the best possible progress on your course, you will have regular feedback from your tutor, in a constructive and supportive environment.

    Entry requirements

    Grade 3 - 4 on your chosen instrument

    What you need to know before you enrol

    You might be required to practise a bit between lessons. Due to the nature of the instruments/content of the course you might be exposed to high volume levels. We strongly encourage everyone to bring a pair of ear plugs to every lesson.

    What you need

    A working instrument, brass should bring mutes if you have them. Drum-kits and amps are provided.

    What you can do next

    This course is designed to accommodate students with mixed abilities and with different learning goals. Differentiation makes it possible for students to achieve results according to their expectations; therefore learners are encouraged to take the course more than once to improve different aspects of their playing. Students may wish to consider joining one of Morley’s Jazz Workshops, Jazz theory classes and Jazz History classes to consolidate their learning. Alternatively learners should consider one of our other ensembles. Ask your tutor for advice or contact the Music Department.