Jazz harmony, ear training and ensembles: advanced

Course Dates: 15/01/21 - 26/03/21
Time: 10:30 - 15:30
Location: Online

Focus on ear training and developing jazz improvisation, applying theoretical understanding to practical situations. We will learn and study jazz standards and unusual repertoire, and continue to operate online this term. This is musicianship training at a high level. New students may apply to music@citylit.ac.uk to arrange an online assessment.

This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.


What is the course about?

Develop your ability to hear, play and understand melody, harmonic progression, style and time feel in the jazz idiom. Detailed study of jazz standards will be supported by listening, singing activities and playing solo.
Develop your ability to improvise well. Learn challenging repertoire. Perform and record your musical efforts.

This is a live online course. You will need:
- Internet connection. The classes work best with Chrome.
- A computer with microphone and camera is best (e.g. a PC/laptop/iMac/MacBook), or a tablet/iPad/smart phone/iPhone if you don't have a computer.
- Earphones/headphones/speakers.
We will contact you with joining instructions before your course starts.

What will we cover?

- Exercises will develop transcription skills and explore and practise approaches to improvising
- Improvising with the voice, notating chord progressions, guide tone lines, exploring scale choice and tensions
- Practice routines will be established for ear training skills
- Explore tools and devices like forward motion, backing riffs, guide tones, enclosures
- focus on listening and responding in the ensemble.

What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...

- Recognise simple & compound intervals, natural and altered tensions over chords
- Develop short-term memory for motif, pattern, etc.
- Sing, write and use modes of major, harmonic minor, melodic minor scales, altered and diminished sounds
- Transcribe single lines and chord progressions quickly and accurately
- have mastered some challenging jazz repertoire
- Invent solo and backing ideas by ear
- show greater expertise in matters of writing/arranging.

What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?

You should have good working knowledge of aural and academic harmony, recognition of intervals and the basic chord types (major, minor 7, dominant and half-diminished) and minor and modal harmony. You need to be accustomed to reading, playing, and improvising in jazz and Latin styles.

How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?

All practical - lots of singing, transcribing musical ideas, and playing exercises and jazz standards together. Weekly practice of improvising solos.

Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?

Please have manuscript paper, your instrument, and way of recording your playing and relaying backing tracks.


Customer Reviews 1 item(s)

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Reviews below are by students who have attended this course, regardless of the course teacher. Please be aware you may not be booking onto a course with the same teacher.

This is an outstanding course with a top class teacher. It is demanding and very engaging, but the musical payoff is great if you persist. The course requirement is to read music well. I cannot read well and so it was quite tough to keep up with the pace of other students who were better trained in the past. there was support for this, but still be aware that the course will be a challenge for weak readers of music. The ensemble work was brilliantly well lead and organised and the experience of playing in small groups with other students and the tutor [who can play everything!] was a priceless, wonderful experience.
Course Rating
Review by Paddy / (Posted on 13/07/2015)
Tutor Biographies
Della Rhodes

Della has enjoyed working at City Lit for over 3 decades, teaching, managing, learning. After training in contemporary dance, Della became consumed by drama and music work. Music came to dominate, playing in bands, song writing, teaching for, and advising, the Youth Service and Adult Education. Performing and writing arrangements for pop and jazz a cappella has been a 30 year journey. So too the teaching of jazz musicianship. Gratitude is due to early mentor Amit Sen for introducing 'the jazz thing'.

Please note: We reserve the right to change our tutors from those advertised. This happens rarely, but if it does, we are unable to refund fees due to this. Our tutors may have different teaching styles; however we guarantee a consistent quality of teaching in all our courses.

Check your level

Course Code: MG603B

Fri, day, 15 Jan - 26 Mar '21

Duration: 11 sessions (over 11 weeks)

Full fee: £319.00
Senior fee: £255.00
Concession: £195.00

Before booking on this course, we'll need you to log in or register with us if you're new. Please then contact us for a chat with our team to check that this course is the right level for you.
Why do I need an advice session?

Any questions? music@citylit.ac.uk
or call 020 7492 2630

Please note: We offer a wide variety of financial support to make courses affordable. Just visit our online Help Center for more information on a range of topics including fees, online learning and FAQs.