Table of Contents
The decision to pursue a career in Jazz is a bold one. But with the right mentors, friends, opportunities, and a little luck, your hard work will take you to unprecedented heights. Renowned Jazz programs around the world make sure to provide their students with the resources and opportunities needed to make it in the music industry. Here are the top 10 institutions you must consider if you want to pursue jazz studies music abroad!
The Julliard School, USA
Located in New York, The Julliard School offers both Bachelor of Music and Master of Music degrees in Jazz Studies. The program is led by trumpeter and composer Wynton Marsalis, and a dedicated faculty of the most renowned jazz artists today.
Faculty: Reuben Allen, Ron Blake, Roxy Coss, and Carla Cook
Students have multiple opportunities to perform both on and off-campus at concerts and Jazz venues in the New York City area. In the classroom, they learn Music Theory, Ear Training, Keyboard Studies, and Music History. The program also helps students build a foundation in the Liberal Arts through courses in literature, history, philosophy, languages, arts, etc.
What’s unique about this program is how it helps students shape their careers through opportunities, connections, and Entrepreneurship. The school’s Alan D. Marks Center for Career Services hones their skills in public speaking, business development, and helps them find freelancing opportunities.
Notable alumni: Miles Davis, Nina Simone, and Chick Corea
Royal Academy of Music, UK
Founded in 1987, the Jazz department at the Royal Academy of Music has produced some of the finest jazz players and composers in the world. The academy offers several graduate and undergraduate courses taught by outstanding and experienced faculty.
Faculty: Nick Smart, Jeremy Brown, Mike Outram, Nikki Iles, Mike Walker, Nia Lynn
Students can choose to pursue a Bachelor of Music, Master of Music, and Master of Arts at the academy. They will learn about Composition, Artistic Development, Transcription, Creative Technology, Jazz History, Improvisation, and more.
The Royal Academy of Music fosters an encouraging environment through rigorous training and frequent performance opportunities at Jazz festivals and venues in London.
Notable Alumni: John Escreet, Sir John Dankworth, and John Law
Conservatorium van Amsterdam, the Netherlands
One of Europe’s most inspiring Jazz programs, Conservatorium van Amsterdam is home to over 400 Jazz students from 50+ countries. The program is taught by internationally renowned artists who constantly revise the curriculum and technology to shape students’ careers.
Faculty: Simon Rigter, Erik Veldkamp, Reiner Bass, Harmen Fraanje, Theo de Jong
Students can pursue a Bachelor, a Master, or a European Jazz Master degree, or undergo preliminary training at the institution. Here, they will have a chance to master an instrument and study Composition, Singing, Music Theory, Live Electronics, and Composing for Film. The program also offers group lessons and organizes master classes and projects, offering students both practical experience and free space.
What’s notable about this program is that it has student exchange progarms with the Manhattan School of Music, New England Conservatory, University of Southern California, The New School of Jazz, and Escola de Música do Estado de Sao Paulo, among others. This allows students to learn and perform both in Amsterdam and abroad.
Notable Alumni: Jesse van Ruller, Benjamin Herman, and Denise Jannah
Manhatten School of Music, USA
One of the world’s leading programs to study Jazz music, Jazz Arts prepares performers and composers for a successful career in the industry. Students can pursue a Bachelor of Music, Master of Music, or a Jazz Arts Advancement Program at the school.
The course covers training in a variety of instruments, Jazz harmony, Ear Training, Music History, Improvisation, Arranging and Composition, Humanities, and Ensembles. It is compulsory for students to be part of ensembles at concert seasons as per the degree requirements.
In addition to learning from a dedicated faculty, students also have the opportunity to observe, play for, and get feedback from some of the most renowned Jazz artists in the world!
Notable alumni: Ambrose Akinmusire, Fabian Almazan, and Patrick Bartley
New England Conservatory
Located in Boston, the New England Conservatory is home to a number of Grammy Award winners and McArthur Genius grant receivers. Their program allows students to choose their own mentors and create their own curriculum so they may shape the future of Jazz.
Faculty: Melissa Aldana Proulx, Bert Seager, Jorrit Dijkstra, John Lockwood
Students learn Music History, Music Theory, and Musicology while also mastering an instrument of their choice. They also participate in ensembles throughout the course duration.
NEC’s Jazz Studies department also helps students build their careers as they study through Community Performances and Partnerships, Entrepreneurial Muscisionship training, and skill development in the Liberal Arts.
Notable Alumni: Andreia Pinto Correa, Billy Hart, and Jenny Ahn
The other top 5 colleges to study Jazz music include-
- Rytmisk musikkonservatorium, Denmark
- Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique et de Danse de Paris, France
- University of North Texas, USA
- Hochschule für Musik und Theater München, Germany
- University of California, Los Angeles, USA
- Columbia University, USA
- There are multiple Jazz programs around the world that provide their students with the resources and opportunities needed to make it in the music industry.
- Top 10 of these colleges have been listed in this blog above.
- Make sure to consider the faculty, performance opportunities, job opportunities, type of institution, and location before choosing and applying.
- Reach out to us if you need help of have any questions.
Liked this blog? Read next: Top 7 musical instruments with names and information!
Q1. What is the best place for jazz studies?
Ans- The top 10 places to study Jazz are listed in this blog. Choose from these schools depending on location, the faculty, and the kind of opportunities you will get during and after graduation.
Q2. Is Jazz a college major?
Ans- If you’re serious about pursuing a career in Jazz, there are several colleges offering Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Jazz Studies. If you are looking to pursue a Master’s but do not have the required qualifications, you can also pursue a diploma in the field!
Q3. Is Julliard good for Jazz?
Ans-Juilliard has one of the strongest track records in producing skilled artists in Jazz history. Their program is set in New York and offers the perfect mix of performance, networking, and career opportunities!