Jazz

Join the Jazz Studies program at PSU School of Music and you will become a part of a dynamic and exciting music community. Located in Portland, PSU will provide you not only with performances on campus, but also throughout our vibrant city. As a Jazz Studies major or minor you will have the opportunity to perform with other talented musicians in a jazz ensemble, learn music theory and improvisation techniques, and receive an excellent foundation for your musical career. 

Unique Community Experience

You’ll meet other students and faculty at Convocation, which happens on the first Monday of the fall quarter. It’s a fun way to kick off the school year, and will give you plenty of introductory information about your first steps as a Jazz Studies student.

One-On-One Support

You’ll sign up for applied lessons in your instrument right away. This one-on-one time with your instructor isn’t just about improving your technique, it’s also a great way to build a relationship with a faculty mentor. Jazz students at PSU often play in off-campus performances with their instructors, as well as seek them out for career advice.

Large and Small Ensembles

Participation in a large jazz ensemble is required starting in your first year. You’re also highly encouraged to join a small group. “Skipping a small group is missing an essential piece of jazz. You’ll feel a part of the community, and it’s fun,” recommends Professor George Colligan.

Performance Opportunities

Between concerts on campus and local gigs in Portland, you can perform as much as you want to. You’ll fit right in at PSU’s School of Music & Theater if you have an unconventional mindset, appreciate an eclectic range of music, and simply love to play.

George Colligan at the piano

George Colligan - Jazz Area Coordinator

George Colligan is not only one of the great jazz pianists of his generation, but he has earned an international reputation as a multi-instrumentalist, composer, accompanist, teacher, and bandleader.