My involvement with your jazz ensembles can take many shapes: director, guest director, sectional coach, theory/improv. coach, or clinician. Jazz ensembles, (the ultimate 1-to-a-part chamber experience), have many moving parts and my approach is geared towards synchronizing all those parts by developing individual awareness, leadership, and ownership. Helping students to develop a unified sound, to know what to listen for, and to fully understand their role in the ensemble are my top priorities.
Jazz is what you make it, and jazz combos can be anything you want. No matter what, the primary focus of any jazz combo should be improvisation and musical dialogue. I have worked with many students (young and old) that are new to jazz, and I have developed a very effective and intuitive approach to getting students' feet wet in a small ensemble setting. And for more advanced players, there is never enough that can be done to develop technique, the ear, creativity, and communication.
Jazz Consulting for Teachers
Jazz consultation for teachers interested in learning more about jazz and how to teach it. Whether you are a jazz "newbie" in urgent need of a little know-how, or whether you simply need recommendations on good jazz ensemble arrangements or a decent text on jazz theory, I can help you. If you are attempting to start or redesign your school jazz ensemble, let me help you organize your thoughts (and your time) to make sure your efforts are as streamlined as they can be while also being fun and meaningful for your students.
As the founder of Quattro Formaggi Saxophone Quartet and a member of dozens of woodwind and brass ensembles spanning two decades, I have cultivated many strategies that can instantly take any ensemble to the next level. For all levels, my approach includes careful attention to sound, blend, balance, intonation, time, and matched articulation for the preparation of a truly expressive and dynamic performance.