Program Overview

Jazz Performance

Principal private study is available in the following areas: saxophone, trumpet, trombone, voice, piano, guitar, percussion, and double bass. Jazz performance students’ talents are developed through the cultivation of technique and artistic vision with the goal of building the skills and capabilities necessary to best express themselves musically. These foundations are established through the guidance of a world-class faculty that is steeped in tradition and maintains an eye on the future.

photo of jazz students performing in college club
Jazz performance majors often perform in the noonday Jazz Forum at the Cat in the Cream Coffeehouse where audience feedback is encouraged.
Photo credit: Matthew Lester

Program Facts

  • Program Type: Major
    • Bachelor of Music (BM)
  • Division: Jazz Studies

Program Director

Bobby Ferrazza,
Professor of Jazz Guitar

Contact

photo of student playing sax with jazz ensemble
Oberlin Jazz Ensemble concert in Finney Chapel.
Photo credit: Walter Novak

Oberlin Jazz Ensemble

The Oberlin Jazz Ensemble features jazz as well as classical performance majors. The group performs in Finney Chapel during the academic year and appears at college festivals throughout the United States. The jazz ensemble presents standard repertoire and new works including pieces by student composers. Recent guest solo artists include Etienne Charles, Nicholas Payton, Michael Mossman, Rufus Reid, John and Gerald Clayton, and Eddie Henderson.

Performance Ensembles

Jazz Performance Faculty

Upcoming Jazz Performance Events

Jazz Performance News

Like Only Oberlin Can

March 30, 2021

Conservatory students reflect on a remarkable fall semester—and stay vigilant through the spring.
Bassist practicing with a pianist.

Persistence, Practice, and Determination

February 2, 2021

Instead of an alarm clock, the sounds of Sergei Prokofiev and Chaka Khan would waft through Caylen Bryant’s childhood home every Saturday morning. Those early days served as inspiration for the jazz bass performance and Africana Studies major. After graduating from Oberlin in 2017, Bryant went on to perfect her own sound, and head a music program handed down to her by author and musician James McBride ’79.
A girl holds a bass guitar in a portrait.

This Week in Photos: Creativity and Strength

November 13, 2020

Inspirational words and chalk drawn images on the sidewalks of Wilder Bowl greeted those passing by this past week. This chalk walk exercise resulted in several standout images featured in this week’s photo series.
A girl draws with chalk on a sidewalk.