The Alton College/Trinity College of Music Specialist Jazz Course

What is the Alton College/Trinity College of Music Specialist Jazz Course?

Students will:

  • Study AS/A2 Music & Music Technology + one other AS/A2
  • Receive 1 hour of instrumental tuition per week together with a 1 hour improvisation/rhythm section lesson per week
  • Be members of the Alton College Jazz Band & Alton College Big Band
  • Attend a 3 hour jazz ensemble rehearsal per week with a member of staff from the Jazz Faculty from Trinity College of Music

Is the Alton College/Trinity College of Music Specialist Jazz Course Suitable for me?

The Course is designed for those students with an interest in jazz who are wanting to apply for a jazz course with a conservatoire or university.

How will I learn?

Study AS/A2 Music & Music Technology (+ one other AS/A2). In these subjects you will study:

  • i) History of Jazz & Pop (AS Music Tech); analysis of Pop & Jazz (AS/A2 Music); iii) arrangement – a) notated & b) recorded (AS Tech); & iv) free composition (AS/A2 Music & A2 Tech).
  • Receive i) a 1 hour instrumental lesson per week & ii) a 1 hour improvisation/rhythm section lesson per week.
  • Join and perform with the Alton College Jazz Band & Alton College Big Band
  • Attend a 3 hour jazz ensemble rehearsal per week with member of staff from the Jazz Faculty @ Trinity College of Music – possibly leading to the Associated Board Advanced Jazz Ensemble exam
  • Regularly perform with The Jazz Factory [the band has a monthly residency at the Hen & Chicken in Froyle] and during the summer of 2009 will be playing at the Isle of Wight Jazz Festival and the Swanage Jazz Festival
  • Other opportunities may include; a short courses, access to the Summer Trinity Jazz Course, joint projects with TCM students on Year 3 Education Pathway, visits to TCM & visits to Alton by TCM ensembles.

How will I be assessed?

(See AS/A2 Music & Music Technology leaflets.) The test of success on this course will be on the number of students gaining places on university/conservatoire courses.

And afterwards

Claire Colbran is studying for A levels in Media, Sociology and Music. As well as being a member of The Jazz Factory, she is also member of the college’s Brass Ensemble, Big Band, Chamber Choir, Choral Society and Jazz Band. From September 2009 Claire has an unconditional offer to study jazz singing at Leeds College of Music.

James Stammers is studying for A levels in Maths, Music & Music Technology. As well as being a member of The Jazz Factory, he is also member of the college’s Big Band, Chamber Orchestra, Choral Society, Composers Ensemble, New Music Ensemble and Jazz Band, whilst outside college he is a member of the Hampshire Youth Jazz Orchestra and local jazz quintet Instant Poetry. From September 2009 James has an unconditional offer to study jazz drumming at Middlesex University.

Laura Jurd is studying for A levels in Music & Music Technology. As well as being a member of The Jazz Factory, she is also member of the college’s Brass Ensemble, Big Band, Chamber Orchestra, Choral Society, Composers Ensemble, New Music Ensemble and Jazz Band, whilst outside college she is a member of NYJO, local jazz quintet Instant Poetry and the Fuse Collective. Recent projects include work with Tomorrow's Warriors Jazz Orchestra and studio sessions with soul/blues singer QuBee From September 2009 Laura will begin a 4 year undergraduate programme, studying jazz trumpet at Trinity College of Music.

Martha Russell is studying for A levels in Music & Music Technology. As well as being a member of The Jazz Factory, he is also member of the college’s Big Band, Choral Society, New Music Ensemble and Jazz Band. Outside college she has played with the South East Hants Jazz Project and is a member of the Havant Clarinet and Saxophone Choir. From September 2009 Martha has an offer to study jazz saxophone at Birmingham Conservatoire.

Pictured above: The Jazz Factory @ The Swanage Jazz Festival, July 2008.

Course Costs

All Students will be expected to provide their own textbooks, stationery, computer discs and calculators (where appropriate). Costs are outlined below:

Music Technology Costs:

Essential £25 for books and materials

Desirable £27 for books and materials

Additional Costs

A number of CDR's will be required for recording performances, compositions and multi-track recordings.

The department organised a number of wide ranging trips throughout the year. Whilst it is difficult to put a price on these, students ought to set aside between £40 and £50 a year for these optional visits.

Whilst all students studying this course will be provided with a weekly free of charge instrumental lesson & improvisation lesson, the College does not have a supply of musical instruments.

If the cost of equipment, materials and trips may cause you financial hardship, there is the opportunity to apply for help from the College Access Fund.