The Jazz Ensemble under the direction of Dr. Bruce Thornton is the major jazz performance group at CSB/SJU. There are about 18 members in the band who major in a variety of fields, from music to math and everywhere in between. The ensemble plays a variety of music, including swing, Latin, funk, fusion, and be-bop from the greats like Duke Ellington and Count Basie to contemporary artists like Fred Sturm, Gordon Goodwin, and even Radiohead.
The ensemble usually plays four home concerts a year, and in addition they tour throughout the United States regularly. The most recent tour was to Florida in 2011 with the Wind Ensemble. The ensemble has also toured to the Bahamas.
Members of the ensemble frequently have the chance to work with high caliber professional musicians through clinics and master classes. Recent guest artists include Dave Holland, Russell Malone, Patrick Harison, Chris Bates, Joey van Phillips, Alan Hampton, Otis Brown III, Steve Turre, the Motion Poets, DIVA Big Band, Bill Mason, and Randy Sabien.
Musicians for the jazz ensemble are selected by audition at the beginning of the academic year. Interested students should register for MUSC 238, which can be taken for 0 or 1 credit.