Overview

The Master of Music program in Studio/Jazz Writing provides students with opportunities for advanced study in jazz and studio arranging, composition and orchestration. The overriding goal is to help students develop a high-level skill set that will enable him or her to pursue a career as a professional arranger/composer, orchestrator, film and media composer and educator. Students encounter a creative, challenging and nurturing educational experience that respects tradition, reflects current professional trends, fosters innovation and stimulates growth among students and faculty alike.

Studio/Jazz Writing is a unique and intense two-year course of study that includes writing for large and small jazz ensembles, symphonic orchestra, large and small jazz vocal ensembles and writing for film and media. In addition, studio/jazz writing majors learn “hands on” how to run a recording studio. Students gain experience recording, mixing and mastering their own writing projects. All SJW (Studio/Jazz Writing) majors receive training in Pro Tools Digital recording and have access to the jazz departments 24 channel Pro Tools HD2 Recording Studio and a Pro Tools 8 channel studio/mixing lab. Additional course work also includes Virtual Orchestration: creating mock-ups of orchestral scores with our extensive sample library. SJW students writing projects are recorded by award winning ensembles including the Frost School of Music: Concert Jazz Band, HMI Studio Orchestra, Studio Jazz Band, Jazz Vocal 1 and Frost Symphony Orchestra. 

Alumni from this program are working throughout the music industry as: film and game composers, feature film orchestrators, trailer and library music composers, concert music composers, music producers, music directors, studio session players and educators (public school, colleges and universities).

Admission Requirements

All applicants to the Frost School must submit the following items:

·       An online application

·       Application fee

·       Resume

·       Three letters of recommendation

·       Official transcripts from every post-secondary school attended

This graduate degree program also requires submission of certain supplemental materials, including:

·       Portfolio

·       Writing sample

·       TOEFL/IELTS score, as applicable

For more detailed information, please visit our Graduate Admission website.

Curriculum Requirements

Major Area
MSJ 716Jazz Composition Seminar II3
MSJ JC6Applied Jazz Composition1
MSJ 717Advanced Jazz Vocal Arranging2
MSJ 621Advanced Modern Arranging III3
MSJ 714Advanced Orchestration3
MSJ 622Introduction to Midi Sequencing and Digital Workstations2
MSJ 775 14
Jazz Writing Ensemble
MSJ 813Master's Jazz Writing Project3
Other Studies in Music
MMI 760Virtual Orchestration3
MMI 761Media Scoring 1: Film Scoring Foundations3
MMI 762Media Scoring 2: Film Scoring Extensions3
MTC 715Graduate Composition2
Electives
Approved Electives2
Total Credit Hours34

Sample Plan of Study

Plan of Study Grid
Year One
FallCredit Hours
MSJ 775 Jazz Writing Ensemble 1
MSJ 622 Introduction to Midi Sequencing and Digital Workstations 2
MMI 761 Media Scoring 1: Film Scoring Foundations 3
MMI 760 Virtual Orchestration 3
 Credit Hours9
Spring
MSJ 775 Jazz Writing Ensemble 1
MSJ 621 Advanced Modern Arranging III 3
MMI 762 Media Scoring 2: Film Scoring Extensions 3
MSJ 716 Jazz Composition Seminar II 3
 Credit Hours10
Year Two
Fall
MSJ 775 Jazz Writing Ensemble 1
MSJ 714 Advanced Orchestration 3
MSJ 717 Advanced Jazz Vocal Arranging 2
MSJ JC6 Applied Jazz Composition 1
MTC 715 Graduate Composition 2
 Credit Hours9
Spring
MSJ 775 Jazz Writing Ensemble 1
Advisor Approved Elective 2
MSJ 813 Master's Jazz Writing Project 3
 Credit Hours6
 Total Credit Hours34

* This is a suggested Plan of Study.  Your actual course sequence may vary depending on your previous academic experience as well as current course offerings.  Students should meet with their academic advisor each semester to determine the appropriate course selection.

Mission

The mission of the Master of Music program in Studio Jazz Writing is to prepare composers/arrangers to enter the music profession and to provide students with opportunities for advanced study in jazz and studio arranging, composition and orchestration with an emphasis on the development of high-level skills that will enable him or her to pursue a career as a professional arranger/composer. We aim to develop student jazz writing skills beyond those developed during the Bachelor's degree.

The program objectives are:

  • Identify, recruit, and retain high quality students who are seeking to develop their jazz and studio writing skills beyond that developed in their undergraduate programs;
  • Evaluate, revise, and develop curricular offerings to continue to meet the challenges facing professional musicians today;
  • Maintain, present, and develop performance and outreach programs that will enable the jazz department to serve as a cultural resource in South Florida;
  • Provide a creative, challenging, and nurturing educational experience that respects jazz tradition, reflects current professional trends, fosters innovation, and stimulates growth among students and faculty alike.

Goals

  • Provide students with opportunities for advanced study in jazz and studio arranging.
  • Provide students with opportunities for advanced study in orchestration.
  • Provide students with opportunities for advanced study in composition.

Student Learning Outcomes

  • Students will be able to write an arrangement for large jazz ensemble (Big Band).
  • Students will demonstrate an appropriate level of skill in adapting (orchestrating) music for a symphony orchestra with attention to idiomatic writing for the four choirs of the orchestral strings, winds, brass and percussion.
  • Students will demonstrate musical composition/arranging, audio production, and academic skills necessary for successful participation in professional musical environments.