Music 218

MUSC 218

Catalog Entry

MUSC218. Jazz Piano
Two hours laboratory (1).

Prerequisite: Level 1 proficiency in keyboard.

Development of piano skills necessary to perform jazz as a solo musician or within an ensemble setting. Emphasis on comping (jazz style accompanying) and solo improvisation with practical applications toward performance.


Detailed Description of Content of Course

The content of the course provides students a basic understanding and development of basic performance abilities with piano as a jazz instrument. The development of comping using stock or formula voicings will allow all students to function as a pianist in most performing situations. Although often presented in only one key, the students will be required to master the voicings and progressions in all twelve keys if competency is to be achieved.


Detailed Description of Conduct of Course

Students will be required to purchase a text to be used as a source for performance and reading exercises. The students will be required to master chord terminology and function within the context of jazz performance. There will be daily preparation of selected jazz tunes including chord changes and melodic improvisation. Weekly listening assignments that coincide with the tunes used in daily preparation assignments will help the student to develop imitation of proven performance practices. All students will study and use "The Real Book", the standard collection of jazz tunes used by all practicing jazz players.

  1. Goals and Objectives of the Course

At the conclusion of the course, the student will have developed basic performance skills on jazz piano, enabling the students to use those skills in performing situations outside of class. The students will be able to demonstrate that ability in an appropriate ensemble setting.


Assessment Measures

Grades are based upon three written exams during the semester, one of which is a cumulative or non‑cumulative final exam. A grade will be given for each of fifteen different playing skills tests. Students will be given a minimum metronomic marking for each of the skills required and will need to demonstrate those skills to the teacher.


Other Course Information

The use of alcohol or drugs prior to concerts or rehearsals is prohibited. By accepting admission to Radford University, each student makes a commitment to understand, support, and abide by the University Honor Code without compromise or exception. Violations of academic integrity will not be tolerated. This class will be conducted in strict observance of the Honor Code. Refer to your Student Handbook for details.


Approval and Subsequent Reviews

February 2006 Reviewed E. Fellin, Chairman