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Dr. Phillips Center Jazz Orchestra

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Audition Notice 

Jazz music is recognized by Congress as a national treasure for its unique place in our history and culture as the only American-born musical art form. The importance of contributing to the global impact of jazz, while upholding its rich musical history, is the goal of the new jazz initiatives at Dr. Phillips Center, including the formation of the jazz orchestra.  

“The Dr. Phillips Center Jazz Orchestra will influence the performance of jazz now and for generations to come with an exceptional caliber of talented jazz artists."

Rodney Whitaker, Artistic Director, Dr. Phillips Center Jazz Orchestra.

We are seeking professional musicians from around the United States for the Dr. Phillips Center Jazz Orchestra and will hold auditions at the Dr. Phillips Center on February 27 & 28, 2017.

Dr. Phillips Center Jazz Orchestra is under the Artistic Direction of Rodney Whitaker, an internationally-renowned bassist and Mack Avenue recording artist. He currently holds the title of Professor of Jazz Bass and Director of Jazz Studies at Michigan State University where he has built one of the leading jazz degree programs and performing faculty in the United States. A proven and committed jazz educator, Rodney has presented numerous master classes across the nation and is a member of Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra. The Dr. Phillips Center Jazz Orchestra is privileged to be the recipient of Jazz Academy Lincoln Center’s Managing and Artistic Director Wynton Marsalis’ charts. 

Audition Requirements

Auditions are full. If you have any questions, please contact auditions@drphillipscenter.org


All Jazz Candidates must be prepared to perform from the following selections unaccompanied, displaying good time, swing ability, technical facility, soulfulness, sound and tone. All three standards must be memorized.

  • Billie's Bounce, Charlies Parker:  Play the melody once, improvise two choruses and the melody out once (tempo half note = 92)
  • Cherokee, Ray Noble:  Play the melody once, improvise one chorus (tempo half note = 150)
  • In A Mellow Tone, Duke Ellington:  Play the melody once, improvise one chorus (tempo half note = 52)

All candidates will be required to sight-read.

TRUMPET I & 4

Groove Merchant

  • Play the Intro measures #1-5
  • Play pick up to Letter B to Letter D (Play all measures including rests, Letters B, C & D)
  • Play pick up to Letter H to the DS sign (You will play all measures including rests, Letters H & I)

Trumpet I - Download Music
Trumpet IV - Download Music

ALTO/TENOR/BARI SAXOPHONES

Groove Merchant

  • Play the Intro Measure #1 to Letter G (Play all measures including rests, Letters A, B, C, D, E, F & G)

Alto Saxophone - Download Music
Tenor Saxophone - Download Music
Baritone Saxophone - Download Music

TROMBONE I & 4

Groove Merchant

  • Play the Intro measures #1-5
  • Play pick up to Letter B to Letter D (Play all measures including rests, Letters B, C & D)
  • Play pick up to Letter H to the DS sign (Play all measures including rests, Letters H & I)

Trombone I - Download Music
Trombone IV - Download Music

PIANO/GUITAR

Groove Merchant

  • Play the Intro, Measure #1 to Letter H (Play all measures including rests, Letters A, B, C, D, E, F, G & H.)

Piano/Guitar - Download Music

DRUMS

Groove Merchant

  • Play the Intro, Measure #1 to Letter H
  • (Play all measures including rests, Letters A, B, C, D, E, F, G & H.)

Drums - Download Music

Drummers will need to demonstrate the following various grooves:

  • Slow Swing
  • Medium Swing
  • Fast Swing
  • Funk
  • Bossa Nova
  • Afro Cuban 6/8
  • Samba
  • Mambo
  • Rhumba