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CCJA Summer Institute

June 2024

A wide variety of week-long,
action packed ensembles & classes

Registration is now OPEN

CCJA's Summer Institute offers something for everyone, from middle schoolers to adult musicians. Immerse yourself in topic-based courses and action-packed themed and jazz ensembles for a week at a time! Summer Institute classes are easy to mix and match - students can participate in more than one at a time and are welcome to join us for one or multiple weeks

Need-based scholarships are available for CCJA Summer Institute Programming, please reach out for more information.

Denver Classes

Denver Student Small Groups

Open to students in middle school and high school, the Summer Institute small groups are a great way for students to work on their improvisation and ensemble playing with like-minded peers. Each group will be directed and mentored by a local professional musician. This session will take place at 800 Kalamath on June 17, 18, 19, 20, and 21 from 4:30-6pm This session will culminate with a concert open to the public on June 21st.

Denver Adult Small Groups

Denver Adult Small Groups

The Denver CCJA Adult Group will meet on Tuesdays and Thursdays June 4-20 from 7-8:30pm. There, CCJA students and faculty play and perform together as they study jazz improvisation, technique, style, theory, and history. Students are encouraged to express themselves improvisationally and through composing/arranging for their groups. This session will culminate in a performance for the public on June 20th.

Brazilian Ensemble 17+

The Denver CCJA Adult Brazilian Ensemble will meet at 800 Kalamath on Tuesdays and Thursdays from June 4-20, 7-8:30. There, CCJA students and faculty play and perform together as they study Brazilian music though improvisation, technique, style, theory, and history. Students are encouraged to express themselves improvisationally and through composing/arranging for their groups. This session will culminate in a performance for the public on June 20th.

Workshops and Classes

Jazz Piano 101

Open to students of all ages. Led by Camilla Vaitaitis, this class will teach you the basics of jazz piano playing. Learn to play simple to intermediate chords, melodic playing, comping and more! You don't need to be a piano player to join, learning basic jazz piano will help you better understand jazz harmony, comping, and how it relates to the rest of the ensemble!

Percussion Workshop

Are you ready to take your percussion skills to the next level? Join us for a 4-day percussion camp, open to middle and high school students, where you'll have the opportunity to learn and practice Jazz Vibes, Modern Drumset, and World Percussion for 4 hours each day.

Our experienced instructors, Greg Tanner Harris and Alejandro Castaño, will guide you through rehearsals, performances, and listening sessions, helping you develop your skills and confidence as a percussionist.

Whether you're a beginner or an experienced player, this camp is the perfect opportunity to immerse yourself in the world of percussion and take your playing to new heights.

Don't miss out on this exciting opportunity to learn, grow, and perform. Sign up now for our 4-day percussion camp!

Jazz Vibes:
Introduction to the vibraphone and its role in jazz music
Basic technique and playing exercises
Practice playing simple melodies and chords
Rehearsal: work on a jazz standard or original composition featuring the vibraphone

Practice playing melodies and chords with more advanced rhythms
Rehearsal: work on a jazz standard or original composition featuring the vibraphone
Performance: perform a piece as a group featuring the vibraphone

Practice improvising over jazz chord progressions
Rehearsal: work on a jazz standard or original composition featuring the vibraphone
Performance: perform a piece as a group featuring the vibraphone

Modern Drumset:
Introduction to contemporary drumset playing
Groove and timekeeping exercises
Practice playing different styles of music (jazz, rock, funk, pop, etc.)
Rehearsal: work on a contemporary song or original composition featuring the drumset

Practice playing advanced grooves and fills
Rehearsal: work on a contemporary song or original composition featuring the drumset
Performance: perform a piece as a group featuring the drumset

Practice playing advanced grooves and fills with more musicality
Rehearsal: work on a contemporary song or original composition featuring the drumset


World Percussion:
Introduction to various world percussion instruments (congas, bongos, djembe, dundun, frame drums from around the world etc.)
Basic technique and playing exercises
Practice playing traditional rhythms from different cultures
Rehearsal: work on a traditional piece or original composition featuring world percussion instruments

Practice playing traditional rhythms with more advanced techniques and musicality
Rehearsal: work on a traditional piece or original composition featuring world percussion instruments
Performance: perform a piece as a group featuring world percussion instruments


Listening session:
Listen to recordings of famous percussionists and discuss their styles and techniques
Reflect on the camp experience and discuss goals for future musical development

Boulder Classes

Boulder Student Small Groups

Open to students in high school, the Summer Institute small groups are a great way for students to work on their improvisation and ensemble playing with like-minded peers. Each group will be directed and mentored by a local professional musician. These groups will meet in the CU Boulder Carlson Gym from 7-8:30pm. This session will culminate with a concert open to the public on the last days of the session. The middle school group will meet June 24, 25, 26, 27, and 28. The high school group will meet June 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7.

Boulder Adult Small Group

The Boulder CCJA Adult Group will meet in the CU Boulder Carlson Gym on Tuesdays and Thursdays from June 4-20 at 7pm. There, CCJA students and faculty play and perform together as they study jazz improvisation, technique, style, theory, and history. Students are encouraged to express themselves improvisationally and through composing/arranging for their groups. This session will culminate in a performance for the public on June 20th.

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