Jazz Ensembles

the UConn Jazz Ensemble

The UConn Jazz Ensemble is the flagship group of the Jazz Studies Program at the University of Connecticut. The 20-piece big band’s instrumentation is comprised of five saxophones, five trumpets, five trombones, guitar, piano, bass, drums and percussion players. The ensemble pays homage to the rich big band tradition by performing repertoire that represents the wide spectrum of jazz styles and eras. Additionally, new works composed and/or arranged by UCONN faculty, alumni and students are frequently programmed. The ensemble travels throughout New England to perform concerts and workshops for many high schools, educational jazz festivals, and music education conferences.

the UConn Jazz 10tet

By establishing middle ground between the 17-piece big band and combos, the UConn Jazz 10tet complements the curricular ensemble offerings within the University of Connecticut's jazz program. Ranging from nine to twelve instrumentalists (although usually ten), the small size of the ensemble facilitates instruction in improvisation and musical interaction within rehearsals. Typically, the Jazz 10tet focuses on the music of a specific composer, arranger or professional band for a semester. Past composers include Michael Abene, Phil Allen, Bill Cunliffe, Miles Davis (Birth of the Cool), Gil Evans, Jeff Fuller, Earl MacDonald, Rob McConnell, Jim McNeely, John Mills, Michael Phillip Mossman, Gerry Mulligan, Marty Paich (Art Pepper +11), Dave Rivello and Nathan Parker-Smith.

Afro-Latin Jazz Orchestra

The UConn Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra explores the intersection of music from Africa, Cuba, Brazil, and the Caribbean. Mambo, Salsa, Samba and more!

Jazz Lab Band

The 17-piece Jazz Lab Band is designed to function as a feeder system, training and developing students to climb the ranks from the Lab Band to the Jazz Ensemble. In rehearsals, the Lab Band focuses on sight-reading and repertoire chosen to teach and reinforce the stylistic nuances of big band jazz.

2018-2019 Performances

UConn Jazz 10tet Concert

Tuesday, April 2, 2019, at 7:00pm

Ballard Institute Theatre

Jazz Ensemble: Art-Inspired Jazz

Thursday, April 11, 2019, at 8:00pm

von der Mehden Recital Hall


UConn Jazz: Works Inspired by Painter, Paul Klee

Sunday, April 14, 2019, at 2:00pm

Wadsworth Atheneum, Hartford, CT


UConn Jazz Combos: Celebrating Art Blakey

Tuesday, April 16, 2019, at 8:00pm

von der Mehden Recital Hall

Jazz Combos

Under the guidance and direction of faculty members, students work together within assigned combos to develop proficiency in the art of jazz improvisation and small-group jazz performance. Groups are often organized according to themes, where the repertoire of a specific jazz composer or genre is addressed. To prepare students for professional performance situations, the memorization of standard jazz repertoire is expected. Combos perform frequently on and off campus. Concerts and clinics are given throughout Connecticut.

Earl MacDonald, MM

Earl MacDonald

Director of Jazz Studies
Director, Jazz 10tet
Director, Jazz Combos

(860) 486-0670

John Mastroianni, MA

John Mastroianni

Director, Jazz Ensemble
(860) 486-4796

Gregg August, MA

Gregg August

Director, Jazz Combos

Doug Maher, MM

Doug Maher

Director, Jazz Lab Band
Director, Jazz Combos