Workshops

Minnesota Jazz Education works with various agencies and artists to provide, support and promote a wide variety of jazz workshops and related jazz education experiences. Partners include the High School for Recording Arts, Schubert Club, MacPhail Center for Music, Walker West Music Academy, Jazz Central Studios and more. 
Stay tuned for future workshop announcements. 

Upcoming Workshops

Minnesota Jazz Education presents a series of FREE online workshops as part of Experience Jazz 2021, presented in partnership with High School for Recording Arts. These workshop are open to the public, and specifically designed for middle and high school and college-aged musicians of all skill levels. Check out these incredible offerings, below!

Voice of Culture Workshop: Griot Skills for Jazz Musicians
Date & Time TBD

Learn the basics of drumming, dancing, singing and telling stories; that’s how most Griots spend their time! This is an interactive experience with Voice of Culture, led by Kenna Camara Cottman. Voice of Culture performances and workshops feature authentic musicians and instruments, and are led by experienced intergenerational oral historians. Participants are encouraged to wear clothes comfortable for movement, and bring any personal percussion or melodic instruments to incorporate into the session!

Approaches to Improvisation Workshop
Date & Time TBD

Improve and inspire your improvisation skills by exploring a diverse range of techniques and approaches. Liz Draper and Tasha Baron are offering an all access workshop on improvisation, composition and spontaneous composition. We will explore everything from modal and chordal and blues jazz improvisation to new music classical improvisation and contemporary avant garde styles.  Prior experience improvising is NOT required. 

Many musicians have hangups and insecurities when thinking about improvising.  We understand and empathize with this.  We believe everyone has something they can offer as a musician and artistic creator, and that there are many ways to create music and improvise.  We aim to untap and engage the workshop students’ creativity and offer a safe space to explore many approaches to making music and collaborating with others.  

This activity is funded, in part, by an appropriation from the Minnesota State Legislature with money from the State’s general fund.

Recent Workshops

Music Technology Clinic
Monday, May 17 6pm CST on Zoom

Learn how to use technology to enhance your skills and vocabulary for musical performance. Come experience the technical side of music! There are so many tools to augment our creativity and share our art with the world. This session will delve into an overview of Music Production, Video Editing, Audio Effects, and Composition with modern software. 

Organize your musical ideas with today’s folk instrument: the laptop. Create fun visuals to help tell your musical story. Use technology to change your acoustic voice. I’m so excited to share this with you! – Dr. Scott Agster

This FREE workshop is a one-of-a-kind opportunity for students to explore jazz piano, meet peers with similar interests, and learn from renowned jazz pianists from the Twin Cities! Designed for middle and high school students that can read music and have a minimum of 3 years of piano experience, students will work on playing jazz piano in small groups with clinicians. Students with no jazz experience whatsoever to students with advanced jazz experience are encouraged to attend, and will be placed in groups based on ability.

Three scholarships of $300 each will be awarded for lessons with one of our local piano clinicians. Scholarships are provided by endowments to Schubert Club from the families of Marie Froehlich, Jane Matteson and David Paulus. Scholarship winners will be announced online after the workshop this year.


Prerequisite for participation:
 A minimum of 3 years or more of piano instruction and must be able to read music.

Registration Questions: Please consider all questions thoughtfully before answering them honestly in order to have the best experience possible. We will be grouping our students differently than previous years in order to optimize student learning, and our registration questions have changed based on extensive discussion with our jazz clinician experts!

For questions please contact Kate Cooper at Schubert Club, 651.292.3266 or kcooper@schubert.org.

Presented by Schubert Club and Minnesota Jazz Education.

Click here to register. Learn more about the clinicians!

2019 Improvisation Workshop

Saturday, November 9 10-2pm at Central High School. Lunch Provided. FREE

Minnesota Jazz Education (MJE) invites local high school-aged jazz combos to participate in an improv workshop. A variety of activities are planned, including improv clinic, combo intensives and a master class for each instrument. Clinicians include Lauren Husting, (trombone), Stephanie Wieseler (saxophone), Omar Abdulkarim, (trumpet), Tasha Baron (piano), Liz Draper (bass), Beth Varela (drums).

This workshops is for combos that meet the requirements (below); not for individual players. Space is limited to four combos. Combos and will be accepted via email confirmation on a first come, first served basis. 

Combo Eligibility:

  • All combo members must be in high school, and can attend the different schools  
  • All combos must have full instrumentation at workshop (minimum 3 pieces, preferably 4 or more, though not a big-band)
  • Combo can be new to playing with each other–OR–be already formed
  • Musicians may only play with one participating combo
  • Combos should bring one or two tunes they’d like to work on 

To secure a spot for your combo, please contact MJE Program Coordinator, Katia Cardenas at info@mnjazzed.org, with the names and instruments of all players in your combo. This program is made possible by a STAR Grant from the City of St. Paul.