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Jazz Studies

A row of jazz majors play saxophones.

Interested in a jazz major? 

The MSU jazz major program is committed to the highest level of performance, mentoring, education and community outreach. Nationally- and internationally-renowned faculty members are drawn from the highest ranks of the jazz community, and all have experience playing with top recording and performing artists in the jazz music industry. 

Supplemental application required

Applicants to the MSU College of Music must also complete the College of Music supplemental application by Dec. 1. During this time, the student's major will appear as music preference in their account. To be considered for admission into the College of Music, candidates must: 
  1. Submit the College of Music supplemental application by Dec. 1;
  2. Submit required supporting documents;
  3. Complete a successful audition.



Graduates with a jazz major have gone on to careers as recording artists and jazz musicians, performing with several well-known soloists and groups including Sean Kingston, Ne-Yo and Carlos McKinney, as well as the Spinners, Count Basie Orchestra, Cyrus Chestnut Quintet and Mulgrew Miller Trio. Recent graduates have been recognized with DownBeat magazine's outstanding college soloist award, Elmhurst Jazz Festival's outstanding musician award, and first prize in the Aspen Jazz Competition. 

Alumni work at: 

  • Lincoln Center
  • Detroit Symphony Orchestra
  • Broadway and off-Broadway productions
  • Entertainment companies
  • Jazz music venues
  • Schools and universities

Alumni work as: 

  • Performing musicians
  • Composers
  • Educators and instructors
  • Conductors
  • Songwriters

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