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Bachelor of Arts in Jazz Performance

Please note that from September 2017 the BA in Jazz Performance, currently offered by Newpark Music Centre will be renamed the BA in Jazz and Contemporary Music Performance, and will be accredited by DCU.

A key feature of this programme includes the continuation of an opportunity for students on the programme to transfer into Berklee College of Music in Boston (www.berklee.edu), one of the most prestigious music schools in the world in the field of contemporary music. Programme modules include Instrumental and Vocal Tuition, Aural Training, Ensemble Performance, Composition and Arranging, Jazz History, and Music Business.

Application to the programme will be through the CAO, with the audition/performance assessment, taking place on Saturday, 8 April  for September 2017 entry.

An aural/theory test is not required.  As entry will be by audition, this will be a restricted entry programme, meaning prospective students will need to have selected this as one of their choices when completing their CAO application in February – availing of the CAO Change of mind facility will not be an option.

Please visit the DCU website for further information: DCU - BA in Jazz and Contemporary Music Performance


The BAJP is a four year course designed to lead towards the acquisition of the skills necessary in the world of contemporary music performance. The course covers a wide range of musical techniques including performance, instrumental technique, improvisation, composition, computer music, aural training, arranging and pedagogical studies. The BAJP can be seen as being a liberal arts education in music, covering as it does so many different areas and giving the participants the skills necessary to operate in a wide area of contemporary music, not just jazz. All of the subjects in the course are geared towards training young musicians to the highest international standards and to be fully equipped to work in the world of contemporary music both here and abroad.

Preparation for life as a professional musician

The BAJP will focus on giving the students the practical skills they must acquire in order to function well in the professional milieu of contemporary jazz, and other musical situations. Due to its very broad nature, jazz is an ideal training for contemporary musicians and the course stresses the practical benefits to the students of the various techniques undertaken in the different parts of the programme.

Preparation for working in an international environment

Contemporary jazz musicians operate in an international environment, by necessity travelling widely to perform. The students on the programme will have access to the same kind of information and training that their contemporaries in other countries do, as they will inevitably be working in an international context. The course is designed to give students the type of training currently available in the best jazz schools in the US and the EU.
This will have the added benefit of preparing the students for Post-Graduate studies at schools and universities throughout the world, should they desire to avail of further education.

Structure of the Programme

As the title of the programme suggests, the BAJP focuses on performance, and has a high proportion of practically based classes designed to help the students become competent performing jazz musicians. The structure of the programme stresses ensemble work and gives the students ample opportunity to develop their performing skills in group contexts. The individual and group instrumental tuition is designed to support the ensemble playing of the students and to provide them with solutions to problems encountered in real-life playing situations.

Operating alongside this practical instrumental and ensemble training are the theoretical and aesthetic elements of the course. The theoretical modules are designed to give the students the necessary harmonic and aural training that are necessary to understand the playing techniques being dealt with in the ensemble classes, as well as giving them information they can use to further their artistic and musical development in the future. The aesthetic elements of the programme are designed to provide a context within which the students can better understand the professional world of contemporary jazz and their possible place in it, and also their place in society as a working musician.

Fees for the academic year 2016/2017 • €5200