27th annual Michigan Jazz Festival

Future of Jazz Stage

The Michigan Jazz Festival and its programming body have always had a firm commitment to jazz education. The Future of Jazz stage is dedicated to the promotion of young and upcoming Michigan artists as well as providing activities that empower their growth.

Understanding the importance of performance for all levels of young jazz musicians, the Future of Jazz stage is inviting the following groups of young musicians to apply to perform 45-minute sets for its audience:

      • High school jazz bands or large ensembles
      • High school or high school age combos
      • University jazz bands or large ensembles
      • University combos

The reasons why you should consider applying to have your students perform at the Michigan Jazz Festival are:

      • At no cost, students will have a plethora of choices in viewing some of the outstanding professional bands in Michigan.
      • They will gain performance experience, often having the chance to play for hundreds of jazz fans.
      • Students will have the option to hear and mix with other students in other jazz programs.
      • They will spend the day in a safe, contained environment with available nearby food.
      • If sent by a school, they will potentially increase their jazz program’s visibility.
      • Students will be able to invite family and friends to their performance. The Michigan Jazz Festival has no attendance fee.

The Future of Jazz stage also selects students to play for professional musicians in its “Playing With the Pros” show. This hour-long clinic will allow Michigan Jazz Festival selected musicians to mentor and guide young, promising musicians in front of a live audience. The show will culminate in a performance with both “pros” and apprentices.

If you are a university or high school jazz band director, instructor, or student bandleader, please use the following link to apply:

Click here to Apply

There is no cost to apply, but it is required to submit two YouTube links of your group, and to answer all of the questions in this brief application. Check back here for information about applying for the 2023 Festival.

The stage will provide a piano, drum set, amplifiers, sound equipment, and music stands.If you have any questions, please contact Scott Gwinnell at wscottgwinnell@gmail.com.