Summer Camp starts July 9th

Blues Alley Jazz Society – 18th Annual Summer Jazz Camp

We are pleased and proud to announce the 18th annual season of the Blues Alley Summer Jazz Camp.  In 2018, we will be relocating to St. Augustine’s Episcopal Church at 555 Water Street SW, Washington, DC.  The camp will take place from Monday, July 9th to Friday, July 20th.  The daily operational hours will be from 9:30 am to 3:30 pm, including a half-hour lunch which students must provide for themselves.  The Church is located adjacent to the new southwest waterfront development “The Wharf”, and nearby the Waterfront metro station (Green Line).

The faculty will be comprised of a variety of multi-talented musicians facilitating top-quality instruction on a range of instruments, and divided into hourly or daily activities including rhythm, sectional, and ensemble practice.  There will also be guest instructors focusing on performance.  At the conclusion of the two-week term, the student should be proficient on their instrument and exhibit the capacity of improvisation in a large ensemble setting. On the final day of the camp, each student will receive a certificate of accomplishment stating their demonstrated ability on their instrument.

Harry Schnipper was the co-recipient of the 2015 “Jazz Educator of the Year” award

Harry SchnipperBlues Alley Jazz Society Director Harry Schnipper was the co-recipient of the 2015 “Jazz Educator of the Year” award along with Ellis Marsalis the father of J@LC director and renowned trumpeter Wynton Marsalis. Executive Director Schnipper received the award in absentia on Saturday, February 14th during the annual Mid-Atlantic Jazz Festival.

The BIG BAND JAM! is back – bigger, badder, bolder and broader than ever!!

The BIG BAND JAM! is back – bigger, badder, bolder and broader than ever. We are pleased to announce our 11th annual legacy tribute, our featured ensembles and our artist-in-residence for 2015. This year we will honor the “Ella and Louis Legacy” and the artist-in-residence will be none other than renowned trumpeter Sean Jones. Our featured big band ensembles will be the Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra, the United States Army Blues, Berklee College and the Thelma Yellin School of the Arts from Givatayim, Israel. In a special salute to Satchmo, we will be distributing free big band charts to all participating schools.

Each of our featured ensembles will be paired with Sean Jones, and we will honor Berklee College with a special proclamation acknowledging their historic commitment to jazz education. Our parent organization will be celebrating a special milestone birthday as we commemorate our own 30th anniversary. The Blues Alley Jazz Society was co-founded in 1985 with famed trumpeter, composer and bandleader Dizzy Gillespie. Over the past three decades, we have remained steadfast to our mission of promoting youth, jazz and education in our Nation’s Capital.

Blues Alley Youth Orchestra Celebrates African American History Month

The Blues Alley Youth Orchestra opens for the U.S. Army Blues for Celebrate African American History Month

Blues Alley Jazz partners with the National Park Service

Blues Alley Jazz will be partnering with the National Park Service in 2015-16 to provide them with programming content in a lead up to their centennial.

It’s the BIG BAND JAM! 2014

It’s the BIG BAND JAM! 2014


We are pleased and proud to announce the theme of our 10th Annual BIG BAND JAM! will be the “Count Basie Legacy”. Our featured artist/clinician will be renowned saxophonist Bob Mintzer. Mr. Mintzer is Chair of the Jazz Studies Department at the Thornton School of Music in the University of Southern California. He is also a member of the GRAMMY winning quartet The Yellowjackets. Our featured big band will be the USAF Airmen of Note.

The 10th Annual BIG BAND JAM! host stage will once again be at Pershing Park plaza on America’s Main Street next to The White House. The plaza is strategically located on Pennsylvania Avenue and in close proximity to our other venues. Our principal performance dates will be April 22nd-26th with day time performances between 11:00 am and 6:00 pm. The event will culminate on Saturday, April 26th with a free big band dance presented by the Airmen of Note. The 10th Annual BIG BAND JAM! has been selected as a “TOP 100” American tourist destination for 2014 by the ABA Tour Operators and we are receiving considerable attention. Our event was selected out of a total of 580 designees and it will be a featured event by DestinationDC. DestinationDC is the dedicated city agency responsible for the citywide promotion of tours or events. We have already received a number of reservations, designations or placeholder requests. We encourage you to do the same:

In collaboration with:
Blues Alley, Eagle Bank, Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra and the Smithsonian Institution, National Park Service, Alfred Publishing, Ella Fitzgerald Foundation, Art ‘n’ Graphix, The Kennedy Center Millennium Stage, XM Radio, MENC, JAM, WPFW, Club Corp.