For beginners, intermediate and advanced students
New at Musica Vesuviana Festival!


Please, call or email for more info about this course.
Tel: +1-339-707-3593
A the end of this course, students will receive an official Diploma of completion.
Where: Fondazione Passarelli, San Marco (SA), Italy

When: from June 25th to July 1st 2012

Instructors: Mark Greel (Brass/Winds/Guitar)Edoardo Pepe (Piano, Ensemble), Sergio Bellotti (Percussion), Tino D’Agostino(Bass, Ensemble), Cheryl Christo (Vocals, Ensemble), Pasquale Tassone (Strings, Percussion, Ensemble)

Brief description and tuition:
This course will be customized to each student’s ability and student’s goals.
In fact, after an audition/talk with each student, we will decide in which level each student will be placed.
If students are already enrolled in Musica Vesuviana, they will integrate this course in their classes, and the cost of this Jazz Improvisation course will be part of their tuition.

If other students would like to sign up only for this course, the cost for the course will be $730. If you are a music camp participant, these classes are included in your tuition. You do not have have to pay this extra $730.
This tuition includes week-long classes, three meals a day and hotel accommodations (private beach, pool, tennis courts, etc),



We would like to focus our efforts in preparing the music students that are not familiar with improvisational skills to learn about how to improvise. This will be made possible through a proven method that will guide progressively students to the targeted goals of being able to improvise on any given melody in different styles while keeping it musical and true to the idiom.
Please, find below a list of the steps/exercises that will be part of the daily practical and theory exercises that each student will be asked to absorb through direct supervision during the classes.

-The course will be based on a week long session

The instructors will teach the following topics:
-Basic Jazz History

-Students will perform a final recital which will be a very valid assessment to the students’ progress.


The topics mentioned in the course outline will be divided into three levels:

1st level:
1. Repertoire:
Memorization of 10-12 compositions in the bebop idiom
2. Harmony:
Key areas, scales, chord tones, guide tone lines to create melodies
3. Execution:
Phrase length, rhythmic activity (sparse/dense), rhythmic feel (even/swing/double). Swing feel.
4. Listening:
Listening to other compositions in the same idiom

2nd level:
1. Repertoire:
Memorization of compositions from the ‘50s and ‘60s
2. Harmony:
Approach notes, lower structure triads, tonic system, guide tone lines
3. Rhythmic approach:
Motif development, rhythmic displacement
4. Execution:
Articulation (staccato/legato)
5. Dynamics and accents:
Natural/general, soft/medium/loud, right hand technique
6. Listening:
Listening to other compositions in the same idiom

3rd level:
1. Repertoire:
Modal, avant-garde and fusion styles
2. Harmony:
Upper structure triads, concepts of modal playing, and pentatonics
3. Rhythmic approach:
Half/double time, and rhythmic values
4. Crafting the solo:
Strategic planning, creation of impact through tension/release, peak points, solo length
5. Listening:
Listening to other compositions in the same idiom

Ensemble Playing

The ensemble playing would cover the following topics in the course of the seminars:

Listening guide to familiarize the student with the idiom of the ensemble (Jazz, Funk, Fusion, etc.)
Brief survey of the historical placement of the compositions
Harmonic analysis
Memorization techniques (to decrease chart dependency while performing at gigs).

The “secrets” of ensemble playing:
Balance interplay
Listening skills (dividing/shifting attention; interactive/reactive playing)
Comping behind soloist.

Basic improvisation techniques:
(See jazz improv.)

How to build a practice routine:
Selection of topics and organization of practice time
Injury-prevention awareness

Students’ rearrangement of class repertoire

Stage Presence and pre-production of a concert

Examples of tune organization, distribution of solos, etc.