Every August, the VJC’s Summer Jazz Workshop hosts about eighty multigenerational (ages 15 and up) students from around the world for an intense week
of study and performance opportunities in beautiful rural Vermont. The Workshop was founded in 1975 by Attila Zoller and has been directed by Eugene Uman since 1997. It is held at The Putney School in a picturesque Green Mountain setting 20 minutes north of Brattleboro. Facilities include ample classrooms, grand pianos and an inviting performance space. Much of the delicious food we are served is grown on the school’s working farm.
World-class faculty encourage and support the musical development of each participant by utilizing a teaching style based on positive reinforcement. The program includes separate tracks in instrumental and vocal music and is designed to maximize hands-on instrument time. Small class sizes, and the fact that most participants and instructors live on-campus, assures interaction between students and faculty. A warmth pervades the experience for all, and there is a strong feeling of community.
Educational opportunities include jazz theory, coached ensembles, master classes, listening hours, and renowned late night jam sessions. These are complemented by morning yoga and meditation sessions plus less formal evening topics called “specials.”
Jam sessions are an integral part of jazz education and the evolution of the jazz experience. Every evening there are instrumental and vocal jam sessions that give students and faculty the opportunity to play together in an informal setting. This gives both students and faculty “hang time:” the opportunity to come together and play music in a relaxed environment unfettered by class schedules.