GJCW Placement Auditions
Our workshop placement auditions are not competitive. They are designed to help the directors place students in a combo with other students at or near their playing ability to enhance the learning experience for all workshop participants.
Students Returning to GJCW
Auditions for placement in specific combo levels for returning students will be submitted by video, and all returning students need to submit an audition video.
Please do not let any part of the audition process get in the way of your participation. If you would prefer to do an in-person audition, feel free to schedule one.
Students New to GJCW
Students who are new to the workshop will do an in-person audition at Chapin Jazz Studio in Grayslake with the directors. After registering, students will receive a link to sign up for an audition time. The directors do their best to make the auditions a fun and educational experience.
Directions for all workshop participants:
- Decide which combo level you feel matches your current playing and improvising ability. Learn about Combo Levels & Music
- Video record yourself playing and improvising over the jazz tune listed for your combo level.
- Save the video to a Google Drive or a Dropbox folder.
- Share that folder with email@example.com.
- If you have questions about these directions, please contact Bill Chapin at firstname.lastname@example.org
Tips on how to prepare for an audition
Please be ready to play one of the two pieces linked above. Play through the pieces, count out measures that are hard for you, and work to play with a swing feel.
Piano, vibes, and guitar
Be ready to play the chords for one of the two songs (see the supplemental page for the chords; use the “head” to know when to play each chord). You could hit the chord on beat one of each measure, or if you’re familiar with typical “comping” rhythms, show us that.
Be ready to play a bass line, or play what is written on the supplemental page, for one of the tunes. Tip: bass players usually play the chord root on beat one, and, depending on the type of tune, move through scale tones to the next chord.
Be ready to play a swing beat for the blues, or what you would play behind one of the tunes above. Keep it simple. Jazz combos need to hear a steady beat, and, generally, complicated playing confuses the band about where the beat is.
Everyone will be invited to improvise over the F blues (or blues in the key of your choice). If you have never improvised over the blues, your friendly combo directors will help you try it during the session. No worries–the workshop is about learning. 🙂