Augustana University students who are interested in jazz have two ensembles to choose from — the Northlanders Jazz Band and the Augustana Jazz Combo. Learn more about auditions.
Founded in 1953, The Northlanders perform for many campus and community events — as well in the annual Jazz on the Upper Great Plains Festival — during each academic year.
Under the direction of Dr. Brian Hanegan, students are trained in both the performance practice and the pedagogical components of jazz music. Our repertoire consists of jazz music from a wide variety of style periods including Dixieland, Big Band Swing, Bebop, Hard-bop, Modal, Fusion, Rock, Funk and Contemporary jazz literature. In addition, this group has commissioned new works in the jazz idiom and given regional premiers of others.
The Jazz Studies program sponsors clinics and master classes during the academic year as part of the annual Jazz on the Upper Great Plains Festival. This two-day festival features more than 45 high school and middle school jazz bands from the quad-state area. Now in its 43rd year, a few of our past artists include: Doug Beach, Mark Colby, Bobby Shew, Allen Vizzutti, Bob Washut, Matt Harris, Matt Niess, Rufus Reid, Chris Vadala, Mike Tomaro, Jeff Jarvis, Wayne Bergeron, Jon Faddis and Wycliffe Gordon and John Raymond.
Students in the jazz combo courses are trained in both the performance practice and the pedagogical components of jazz improvisation. Specifically, students will study: improvisational techniques, ear training, repertoire, composition and nomenclature. In addition, students will perform at various events throughout the duration of the course.