Department of Music

Jazz Ensemble

Spring 2018 audition information

Auditions will be held by appointment during Fall Semester finals week. Please contact Dr. Pimentel at

All instrumentalists:

  • All participants must audition, including returning band members. For Spring semester, all Fall participants are invited to return. Auditions will be held only for prospective new members.
  • Improvisation and previous jazz experience are not required.
  • All instruments (other than drums) may optionally prepare the improvisation portion if they wish to be considered for improvised solos for performances. Improvisation is not required for participation in the band. Backing track for improvisation portion


Prepare No Snooze Blues, letters D and E. Audition on alto, tenor, or baritone, whichever you are most comfortable with. Parts will be assigned.


Prepare No Snooze Blues, letters G and H. Audition on either the high part or the low part.


Prepare No Snooze Blues, letters G and H. Audition on either tenor or bass trombone.


Prepare The Louie Shuffle, beginning through m. 40. Play the part as notated, or improvise/comp appropriately, or a combination of both.

  • Guitar – please contact Dr. Pimentel. Typically guitarists must have previous training in jazz-style chord voicings and must have jazz-appropriate equipment.
  • Piano
  • Bass
  • Drums

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The DSU Jazz Ensemble is a “big band” made up of music majors and non-music majors selected by competitive audition. The band is known in the community for its annual Big Band Bash fundraiser, an evening of dining, dancing, and classic Swing Era music.

Big band jazz is characterized by tightly coordinated, high-energy playing from a large horn section made up of trumpets, trombones, and saxophones, working in partnership with a powerful, driving rhythm section of keyboards, bass, and drums. Individual group members often perform solos that are “improvised”—composed spontaneously in live performance.

The DSU Jazz Ensemble’s repertoire includes favorites from the Swing Era of the 1930’s and 1940’s as well as more contemporary jazz styles from the 1950’s to the present.