News Releases

Milt Hinton Institute Returns with Emphasis on Suzuki Instruction

March 31, 2016

Erich Burnett

Milt Hinton
Milt Hinton performs with Cab Calloway’s band in Havana, Cuba, 1951.
Photo credit: The Milton J. Hinton Photographic Collection

Oberlin Conservatory’s 2016 series of summer programs for developing musicians opens June 12-19 with the second Milt Hinton Institute for Studio Bass. Held on the beautiful campus of Oberlin College & Conservatory, this dynamic program is named in honor of the legendary jazz bassist, a prolific performer and studio musician whose long career intersected with many of the greatest artists of the 20th century.

Designed for bass students ages 13-21 of all ability levels, the Hinton Institute consists of a week of master classes, performances, bass ensembles, studio sessions, lectures, and workshops. It focuses on a comprehensive range of genres: classical, early music, jazz, slap, Latin, and electric.

For the first time, the 2016 institute features Suzuki teacher-training opportunities for participants 18 years and older. Teacher-training courses include Every Child Can and Bass Book 1, with leading Suzuki trainers Virginia Dixon and Kimberly Meier-Sims. Every Child Can is a one-day course introducing the Suzuki philosophy and method, and is a prerequisite for all Suzuki courses that follow. Participants for the Suzuki Bass Book 1 course must pass an audition and be an active member of the Suzuki Association of the Americas.

In addition, young bass students (ages 5-12) of all ability levels will have opportunities for afternoon Suzuki instruction.

Directed by Oberlin’s Professor of Jazz Studies and Double Bass Peter Dominguez, the Hinton Institute features a host of the nation’s finest teachers and performers across a variety of styles: John Clayton Jr., Max Dimoff, Scott Dixon, Diana Gannett, Robert Hurst III, Mimi Jones, John Kennedy, Audrey Melzer, Tracy Rowell, Donovan Stokes, Inez Wyrick, and Derek Zadinsky.

In addition to his standout performing career, Milt Hinton faithfully documented his own life and its many musical intersections through photography. The Milton J. and Mona C. Hinton Photographic Collection will be featured in a lecture by Jeremy Smith, Oberlin Conservatory’s Special Collections librarian. Associate Professor of Jazz Arranging Jay Ashby will lead a recording studio class, and renowned bass luthier Bruno Destrez will present a workshop on instrument setup and minor adjustments.

Applications for the 2016 Hinton Institute are due by May 1. Scholarships are available for junior high and high school students, and double basses are available for rent. To learn more about all of Oberlin’s summer programs for musicians, please visit

ABOUT THE OBERLIN/MILT HINTON CONNECTION: In 2013, Oberlin Conservatory acquired four basses from the collection of legendary bassist Milt Hinton, including the Italian instrument Hinton bought in the late 1930s and played throughout his career. In addition, the Hinton estate donated to Oberlin a voluminous collection of papers amassed by Hinton and his wife Mona—everything from personal journals, to correspondence with music legends, to contracts from memorable shows. Part of Oberlin's expansive Special Collections, the Milton J. and Mona C. Hinton Papers bolster Oberlin's role as a world leader in the study of jazz. Inaugurated in 2014, the biennial Milt Hinton Institute for Studio Bass takes place on campus in June.

You may also like…