Jazz Port Townsend – The Workshop

Workshop pianists enjoy a Master Class with faculty pianists George Cables, Benny Green, Taylor Eigsti, Geoffrey Keezer, and Dawn Clement. Alexis Lombre (in orange) asks a question, with Taylor Eigsti at the keyboard.

July 23-30, 2017
Fort Worden State Park, Port Townsend, WA


Spend a week living and learning with some of the finest musicians in the jazz world. Led by Artistic Director John Clayton, Jazz Port Townsend is the summer jazz camp designed to take you to the next level of musicianship. There’s a lot to learn at Jazz Port Townsend in 2017. We’ve made changes in our Vocal Track and Educator Track we think you’ll love, and we have several instrumental faculty who are new this year. Whether it’s your first time here or your 31st, you’ll find lots of fresh input on how to improve throughout the year.

The workshop is open to participants high school-aged and above, so whether you’re a journeyman performer, aspiring professional, or an enthusiastic beginner, you’ll find colleagues who are the perfect fit for you to make music with. If you are an educator, please visit our Educator Track section to learn how you can be a part of the week, and vocalists will want to learn about our first-ever Jazz Vocal Ensemble in our Vocal Track (see below)!

Artistic Director John Clayton has hand-picked faculty who are outstanding both as performers and teachers. They’ll inspire you with their playing, and then work with you directly to develop your own skills.

You’ll receive focused instruction as you rehearse daily in combos or vocal classes. Jazz Theory sessions provide valuable information for increasing your skills as an improviser. Master classes are conducted each day by faculty members who cover topics specific to their chosen instruments. “Faculty Presents” concerts each afternoon give you a chance to hear performances in an intimate setting. The workshop culminates in a series of “Students Present” concerts in which all participants have an opportunity to perform.

Applicants must have good technical command of their instrument or voice, as well as elementary improvisation experience or a basic knowledge of music theory. Differing levels of experience are expected, and every effort is made to match players of similar abilities. An audition is required.

Applicants apply at one of three levels: Beginner/Intermediate, Advanced, or Semi-Pro. Semi-pro players have the option of applying for special themed combos, focusing on specific styles (details in the audition instructions). All participants receive daily instruction from our outstanding artist faculty.

Vocal Track & Vocal Jazz Ensemble

We’re excited to offer for the first time two ways to participate as a vocalist at Jazz Port Townsend:

  1. In our new Jazz Vocal Ensemble and as a vocal soloist. The ensemble will be led by Take 6 veteran Cedric Dent, who was a member and co-producer of the renowned vocal ensemble for several years and is now a Professor at Middle Tennessee State University. Up to 16 singers will be accepted in the ensemble, each using a microphone. Written charts will form the foundation over which you’ll improvise, so you’ll need to have reading skills. (We’ll ask you for the name, email and phone number of a teacher or director familiar with your abilities as part of your online application). Vocalists accepted in the ensemble track will spend two-thirds of their time in the ensemble and the remaining time working as a soloist in the program below that Centrum has long been known for.
  2. In our longstanding program that focuses on developing your skills as a soloist. You’ll work daily with faculty and a professional rhythm section to hone practical skills as well as on developing your distinctive voice as an artist.

For more information, call or email Jazz Program Manager Gregg Miller at gmiller@centrum.org, or 360.385.3102 x109.

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