Music Department - St. Cloud State University

Music Department - St. Cloud State University

Jazz Pedagogy

When          Friday, July 26 @ 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. & 1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
       Performing Arts Center 113
Contact Hours         6

This course will provide directorswith practical and proven techniques for jazz ensemble direction. Emphasis will be on rehearsal technique, rhythm section, and improvisation pedagogy. Be sure to bring your instrument, as we will create an ensemble from class members, and use that as our lab band.

Repertoire Jazz Pedagogy

Understanding stylistic differences. Considerations for curriculum and programming. Choosing the appropriate grade level. Concert programming.

Rehearsal Techniques

Jazz score interpretation. Rehearsal and curricular planning. When and how to conduct (and when NOT to!)

Rhythm Section

Functions of the different instruments Rhythm section notation Placement and set-up of the rhythm section.


Basic jazz theory Melodic development Ensemble improvisation activities.

Using Garage Band

When         Thursday, July 25 @ 1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Where        Performing Arts Center Room 250
Contact Hours         3

Technology can enhance the classroom teaching and learning experience like neverbefore. We will examine two very common and powerful tools available to the music teacher.

Garage Band is an audio application available free on Mac computers (it is not available on PCs), and offers many easy to use music-making tools. SmartBoards are interactive whiteboards that offer many useful features to music teachers.

Garage Band Applications

Audio Editing

•        Basics of editing audio
•        Creating excerpts
•        Creating custom mixes
•        Sharing and exporting files

Student Composition

•        Loops and MIDI
•        Software instruments
•        Live instruments and vocals
•        Movie scoring

Dean Sorenson (b. 1963) is Associate Professor and Director of Jazz Studies at thDean Sorensone University of Minnesota as well as a prolific and highly sought-after composer, arranger, trombonist, educator, and clinician. He received his bachelor’s degree in trombone performance from the University of Minnesota and his master’s degree in jazz arranging and composition from the Eastman School of Music.

Mr. Sorenson’s most recent work is FIRST PLACE FOR JAZZ, a new and innovative method for beginning jazz players. He is the co-author of the STANDARD OF EXCELLENCE JAZZ ENSEMBLE METHOD and ADVANCED JAZZ ENSEMBLE METHOD, an innovative and comprehensive series for middle school and high school jazz ensembles. He is also the author of JAZZ COMBO SESSION and FIRST JAZZ PERFORMANCE, also under the Standard of Excellence banner. He has composed numerous pieces for concert band and jazz ensemble published by the Neil A. Kjos Music Company.

As an advocate of jazz education and the expansion of the repertoire, he continues to develop creative materials and methods to help students and teachers better understand the art form.  An outstanding clinician, conductor, and soloist, he is frequently featured at festivals and conventions around the country and abroad. He also maintains a full schedule of concert and recording dates as a Yamaha performing artist.

Mr. Sorenson has composed and arranged for numerous ensembles including the Glenn Miller Orchestra, the Airmen of Note, the United States Air Force Band, and the Minnesota Orchestra. He is active as a commissioned composer and arranger for jazz ensemble, symphony orchestra, concert band, and chamber ensembles, and has also written several sacred choral pieces. For more information please visit

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