Have a question about the jazz program at NOVA? Contact Prof. Shannon Gunn at sgunn@nvcc.edu.

Play Jazz at NOVA’s Alexandria Campus

Whether you are pursuing our Associate of Applied Arts (A.A.A.) degree in Jazz/Pop music, already play jazz and want to meet other musicians, or just want to learn the basics of improvisation and swing, there is a place for you at NOVA’s Alexandria Campus. We believe that education should be open to all. Our multi-faceted program requires no audition. You can begin taking classes right away. Our students transfer to some of the country’s best music schools and you can hear NOVA alumni at clubs and gigs all around the D.C. area.

The following classes are offered in Fall and Spring semesters:

  • Jazz Ensemble (MUS 135)
  • Improvisational Techniques (MUS 159)
  • Advanced Improvisational Techniques (MUS 259)
  • History of Jazz (MUS 225)
  • Jazz Chamber Ensembles (MUS 144)

Private Instruction from jazz professionals is also available:

  • Wade Beach, piano
  • Cristian Perez, guitar
  • Glenn Dewey, bass (Annandale Campus)
  • Matt Halligan, drums
  • David Doescher, saxophone
  • Michael Creadon, trumpet
  • Shannon Gunn, trombone

Our flagship jazz group is the NOVA Alexandria Jazz Ensemble, a 20+ member group that performs classic and original big band works from the 1930s to the present. Students meet once a week as a class at the Alexandria Campus and perform at events on and off campus. Previous performances have been at the Blues Alley, Schlesinger Center for the Arts, Alexandria Community Festival, Alexandria Public Library and Twins Jazz club in Washington, DC. Members of the group are college students (music majors and non-music majors), high school students and community members of all ages. Membership in the NOVA Jazz Ensemble requires registration for MUS 135 001A.

Contact Prof. Shannon Gunn at sgunn@nvcc.edu or 571-318-6278 for further information about joining the ensemble.

Annual performances include:

  • Jazz Night at the Carlyle Club
  • Jazz4Justice concert in the Schlesinger Concert Hall
  • Jazz Faculty Recital in the Music Recital Hall
  • Blues Alley Alley Big Band JAM in Washington, DC


Jazz4Justice 2015 backstage

Jazz4Justice 2015 trombone solo

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