Tag Archives: combo

Gift of Jazz Winter 2013 Jazz Courses

The Gift of Jazz winter courses offered by professional pianist, composer, and educator Marc Sabatella begin on January 26, 2013.

The theme to this series of courses is Modal Jazz, a phrase that encompasses the music of Miles Davis’ “Kind of Blue”, John Coltrane’s “A Love Surpeme”, Herbie Hancock’s “Maiden Voyage”, Wayne Shorter’s “Speak No Evil”, and much more.  The primary aspect of modal jazz that we will be looking at is the idea of using scales as the harmonic foundation of composition and improvisation.

Please enroll soon to reserve your spot!


Jazz Composition – Beyond Functional Harmony (Saturdays: 10:00 – 11:15 am)

  • Dates:  January 26 – March 16  (8 week program)
  • Fee:  $150

Some of the most beloved jazz recordings of all time are based on relatively sparse composed material – most notably, Miles Davis’ “Kind of Blue” and John Coltrane’s “A Love Supreme”.  These deceptively simple foundations allows the performers to build their own structures, improvising with just a few scales rather than being locked into a predictable chord progression.  At the same time, composers like Herbie Hancock and Wayne Shorter extended the vocabulary of jazz harmony to include unique but more complex sonorities that also encourage the use of scales as improvisational tools.  In this class, we will learn to create compositions that go beyond conventional harmonies and provide different types of frameworks for jazz performance.  The final projects will be performed by a professional combo at Dazzle.


Jazz Improvisation and Theory – Improvising Using Scales (Saturdays: 11:30 – 12:45 pm)

  • Dates: January 26 – March 16 (8 week program)
  • Fees:  $150

Improvisation in modal jazz involves learning a set of scales and developing the ability to create melodies with them.  This is something most musicians have always done using the major scale, minor, and/or blues scales, but modal jazz introduces other possibilities.  In this class, we will learn a number of other useful scales and when/how to use them, playing over tunes by people like Miles Davis, John Coltrane, and others.  This course culminates in an (optional) performance at Dazzle.


The Gift of Jazz Small Jazz Ensemble – Modality (Saturdays: 1:00 – 2:15 pm)

  • Dates: January 26 – March 16 (8 week program)
  • Fees:  $150

Work on soloing and playing in a combo setting with a special emphasis on the modal jazz – music that encourages the use of a variety of scales as a basis for improvisation. This course culminates with a performance at Dazzle.


Space in all classes is extremely limited. Discounted tuition is available for students interested in taking more than one class. To enroll click here! (tuition is non-refundable unless the class is not held).

We hope to see you there!

Gift of Jazz Fall Education Classes – Live Recording at Dazzle, 11/20/2012

The Gift of Jazz presents courses for beginners to professionals on the development of jazz techniques. This installment is a series of courses that approaches the study of the Cool jazz harmony, melody and improvisational style. Courses culminate with a concert of original compositions, student performances and collaboration with professional Colorado jazz musicians. Combine two or three courses to gain a greater understanding of the many aspects of composing and performing in the Cool jazz style. It is my honor and pleasure to teach these classes this year.

Here are videos from our fall concert at Dazzle. The first is of a professional ensemble playing student compositions:

This one is of the student combo: