For information on Vocal Jazz auditions, see the Vocal Jazz Auditions page.
Degrees: Jazz Vocal Performance is one of three areas of degree emphasis at the Bachelors, Masters, and Doctoral (DMA) levels. Within the undergraduate and graduate degree programs, students are involved in private applied lessons, recitals, vocal jazz forum, and the vocal jazz ensemble program.
Program of Study
In both the Bachelor and Master of Music Jazz Studies degrees, singers study the traditions and techniques of vocal jazz performance (both solo and group), jazz aural and keyboard skills, jazz theory and arranging, as well as courses in jazz history. In addition to jazz courses and ensembles, undergraduates must satisfy College of Music and University Core requirements.
Participation in one of the four vocal jazz ensembles (UNT Jazz Singers, Avenue C, Third Street and West End) is open to any UNT student (regardless of major), on the basis of live auditions, held at the beginning of each semester. For more information visit the UNT Jazz Singers auditions page. For the most current information, photos, videos, etc., visit and "Like" the UNT Jazz Singers Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/UNTJazzSingers
Vocal jazz majors are expected to participate in a jazz ensemble every semester.
• Undergraduate vocal jazz students study jazz voice with a Graduate Teaching Fellow during their first four semesters of applied voice. Following a successful Upper Division Examination (UDE), students study with one of the senior faculty (either Rosana Eckert or Jennifer Barnes). The senior recital occurs in the 8th semester.
• Graduate students pursuing the Master of Music in Jazz Studies have four semesters of vocal jazz applied study. The graduate recital occurs in the fourth semester.
For a listing and description of courses offered in vocal jazz and related subjects, see the Jazz Studies courses page.
Vocal Jazz Forum
Vocal Jazz Forum is scheduled each Friday afternoon at 3 PM in Lab East (Room 263) in the fall and spring semesters, featuring two or three students with instrumental accompaniment sharing the 50-minute performance, as well as specialized topics of interest. All vocal jazz majors are expected to be in attendance.
Vocal Jazz Recitals
The senior recital occurs in the last semester of study, and is shared by two student performers. Before presenting a senior recital, the student must first pass the Final Improvisation Proficiency Examination (FIPE), scheduled at the end of MUJS 4120, Vocal Jazz Styles. The senior recital may be given only in Fall or Spring semester; recital procedures and requirements are available in the Office of Jazz Studies.
The graduate recital is given by one singer, and occurs in the last Fall or Spring semester of study. Prior to the graduate vocal jazz recital, the student must earn an A or B in MUJS 4120, Vocal Jazz Styles, or test out of the course. Before being approved to present a graduate recital the singer must pass the Graduate Improvisation Proficiency Exam (GIPE).
For Further Information:
Contact Jennifer Barnes (email) and Rosana Eckert (email) for information regarding vocal jazz at UNT.
• For UNT Jazz Singers information visit here.
• For North Texas Vocal Jazz Workshop (held each summer at UNT) information visit here.
• For Jazz Singers recordings visit here.
MUJS 1131.507 (Fall) (1 cr) • Mon/Wed 2:00–2:50 PM Room 292
MUJS 1132.507 (Spring) (1 cr) • Mon/Wed 2:00–2:50 PM Room 292
Fundamentals of Vocal Jazz Performance is an introductory course focusing on the essential elements required of a jazz singer, and of a vocalist in the Jazz Studies program at North Texas. These include:
• Standard jazz repertoire and interpretation
• Singing chords, scales and modes
• Singing “enclosures” and melodic patterns that comprise the jazz language
• Aural transcriptions of vocal & instrumental improvised solos
• Sight Reading
• Lead Sheet construction
• Finale (computer music notation)
• Time Management skill development
• Communication skill development
• Learning efficient and effective individual practice habits
MUJS 1131.507 has no prerequisite, but you must be enrolled in a music lab (preferably a jazz lab), and in Jazz Fundamentals courses as needed for advancement in your degree plan. Before the third semester, students must complete all four sections of Jazz Fundamentals, and pass the Listening to Jazz Records course (MUJS 1470).
Students are expected to be at every class on time, actively participate, and complete all assignments. Two absences are permitted for each semester. The final grade will be based on class participation, assignments, and exams.
Students are expected to be prepared for each class, participate, and keep a notebook of course materials. Students are also expected to attend jazz performances, both on and off campus, and to begin to integrate themselves into the jazz community.
Students will learn eight new jazz standards, prepare lead sheets for each song, and perform them in class.
MUJS 1132.507 is a continuation of 1131, taught in the spring semester. Same criteria apply to this course as to 1131.
MUJS 1131 and 1132 operate within the University policy on disabilities.
Prerequisites: MUJS 1132.507 (Vocal Jazz Fundamentals), MUJS 1360, 1361, 1370, 1371 (Jazz Fundamentals), one semester each of Music Theory, and MUJS 1470.
Corequisite: MULB 1820 Jazz Singers (any of the four sections)
Grading: Determined by participation, repertoire development, and end of semester jury performance.
Repeatable for credit, contingent upon a minimum grade of B.
Content: Vocal Jazz Techniques addresses the basic stylistic requirements for solo singing in the jazz/popular idiom.
Course Topics include:
• Analysis of established singers and styles
• Vocal production for jazz singing
• Microphone technique
• Lyric interpretation
• Repertoire development
• Arranging for a trio rhythm section
Students must demonstrate the ability to sing in popular styles to be admitted into this course. Entrance evaluations will consist of students singing two prepared pieces in jazz/popular styles. Students are also required to provide an accompanist, or recorded accompaniment for the entrance evaluation.
Prerequisite: Two semesters of Vocal Jazz Techniques, minimum grade of "B", the College of Music Upper Division Exam (vocal proficiency), and the Jazz Studies Improvisation Continuation Exam (ICE).
Co-requisite: Jazz Singers I (no exceptions)
Meetings: Tuesday and Thursday 11:00 - 11:50 AM Room 348.
Attendance: Students are allowed 2 absences per semester.
Weekly Assignments - 50%
Preparation and Presentation of Gig Book - 25%
Final Recordings and Arrangements - 25%
Course Objectives: Vocal Jazz Styles is the final class experience for the vocal jazz program, and is taken in the semester preceding the senior recital. The course emphasizes the three sections of the Final Vocal Jazz Exit Examination which include:
1. Performance and improvisation in three styles of vocal jazz:
• Swing tunes and blues including blues-oriented improvisation
• Straight-eighth and Latin tunes, including lyric/melodic improvisation
• Ballads including lyric improvisation.
2. Jazz Piano skills. Students will learn to accompany themselves.
3. Arranging. Students will arrange each song for jazz trio, with at least one song featuring one/two horns. Arrangements must contain appropriate harmonic changes and reveal the benefits gained from strategically chosen transcriptions. All lead sheets and arrangements will be notated and printed using Finale.
The course also addresses basic sound reinforcement and recording techniques.
Prerequisite: MUJS 3610, minimum grade of B.
Grading: Determined by assignment grades, attendance, and final project grades.
Attendance: Mandatory. 2 absences will be allowed per semester.
Course Objective: Provide students with the basic techniques and concepts utilized in vocal jazz arranging including:
• Analyzing selected arrangements
• Playing short selections of selected arrangements on the piano (all voices)
• Arranging for rhythm section.
• Arranging an a cappella ballad for 4-6 voices (SATB)
• Arranging a song for 4-6 voices with rhythm section accompaniment
• Chord voicings and voice leading for vocal groups.
• Performance and recording of the two large projects.