Throughout the year, the Jazz Department at the University of Houston Moores School of Music hosts annual events annual events like regular concerts, a jazz festival and a week-long summer jazz camp for younger students. However, there are also smaller events like clinics, masterclasses and impromptu concerts that may quickly pop up within a semester. We try to publicize all these events to the public, but a sure way for anyone to know what’s going on with the UH-MSM Jazz Dept. is to subscribe via email, RSS or even our Twitter feed for the latest news.

Jazz Festival

The Moores School of Music at the University of Houston opened its doors in the fall of 1997 thanks to the generous donation of Rebecca & John J. Moores. For the opening week of the new school, a concert featuring student ensembles and world-renowned artists was given nightly. For the evening of jazz music, three of the greatest living saxophonists guest artists, billed as “The Three Tenors”. That evening saw Joe Henderson, George Coleman and Joe Lovano grace the stage with the MSM Jazz Orchestra. Soon after this, the jazz department began presenting an annual festival to bring such great talent to Houston.

The annual Moores School of Music Jazz Festival officially began in 1999 with an appearance by The Count Basie Orchestra and saxophonist Michael Brecker. This event welcomes junior high and high school jazz ensembles to perform in an adjudicated festival setting for a panel of judges comprised of local professional jazz musicians.  Of course, the festival’s main attraction is the featured guest artist.  Each year, an internationally recognized jazz artist visits to present clinics and perform with the Jazz Orchestra, all of which is open to the public.

While the festival has been in operation since 1999, the jazz department at UH has welcomed many distinguished artists for several years. The following list chronicles those who have performed, lectured or been featured as a guest artists with the Jazz Orchestra.

1988: Carl Fontana
1992: Joe Henderson
1993: Charlie Haden
1994: Ed Thigpen
1995: Conrad HerwigAdam NussbaumDave Taylor
1996: David MurrayMarvin Stamm
1997: Joe Henderson, George ColemanJoe LovanoTerence Blanchard
1999: The Count Basie OrchestraMichael Brecker
2000: Danilo PerezChristian McBride, Terence Blanchard Quintet, David Liebman
2001: Kenny Garrett QuartetBobby Shew
2002: Conrad Herwig
2003: Michael Brecker
2004: Lew Soloff
2005: Avishai CohenRandy Brecker
2006: Tim Hagans
2007: Conrad Herwig, Bill CharlapDiane Schuur
2008: Wayne BergeronAnn Hampton-CallowayVincent Herring
2009: Bill EvansJon FaddisVictor WootenBilly Stritch
2010: Brian LynchJens Lindeman
2011: Andy Martin
2012: Seamus Blake, Dan Haerle
2013: Lew Soloff, Terence Blanchard
2014: Brad Leali
2015: Shelley Carol

Texas Music Festival Jazz Institute

As part of the Moores School of Music Texas Music Festival, the annual TMF Jazz Institute is an intensive week-long day camp in June for middle school and high school students to sharpen their jazz performance skills. Students can expect to be exposed to work in big band & jazz combo settings, study jazz improvisation & theory, rehearse in sectionals and receive masterclasses from the exceptional staff. Registration is very limited, so we encourage students to enroll quickly.