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200,000+
Alumni from our Global Campuses

The Bachelor of Music in performance with an emphasis in jazz equips students with the tools to build a multi-faceted career in the professional music world as jazz performer. The Webster jazz studies program is based around the small group performing experience. Jazz students participate in combos, the Jazz Collective or Jazz Singers. In addition to core music classes, jazz students study improvisation, jazz theory, scoring and arranging, jazz pedagogy and history. Students who would like a music technology curriculum can add on the minor in sound recording and engineering in the Department of Audio Aesthetics and Technology.

At Webster, experience several special study opportunities such as:

  • Jazz students benefit from Webster's strong cooperation with Jazz St. Louis. The world-class Dennis Owsley Jazz Recording Collection is housed in Emerson Library.
  • Student musicians usually attend the Vienna campus in the junior year spring semester, where Webster has had a campus since 1981, and hone their skills in the city home to legendary composers Beethoven, Mozart and Strauss. 
Application and Audition

Become a Gorlok

If you plan to major or minor in music, you must complete an audition as part of your application to Webster.

Steve Schenkel
Why Webster?

“If you have an interest in being a highly skilled jazz player or an expert in music technology (or both!) then Webster is a great place to be. Our entire program is based around small group playing, so all of our students have an opportunity to shine as individuals. Our audio recording and midi programs will immerse you in the latest technology under the guidance of world-class faculty.”

Steve Schenkel
Steve Schenkel, PhD

Emeritus Professor of Jazz

Plan Your Webster Education

The Bachelor of Music in Performance with an Emphasis in Jazz four-year plan helps you visualize the courses you'll take each year of your education journey at Webster University.

Connect with Webster

Experienced Music Faculty

Webster University Jazz Collective

Jazz Performance

To learn more about our program and course offerings, email Paul DeMarinis, Director of Jazz Studies.

View a 2014 television broadcast featuring Webster's jazz program

Dennis Owsley Jazz Recording Collection

Dennis Owsley, one of Saint Louis' most avid jazz fans, donated his entire 54-year collection of jazz recordings to Webster University in 2012. This gift is housed in Emerson Library in the Dennis Owsley Jazz Recording Collection, and is a benefit to our students and faculty, to the community, to historians and researchers, and to all who love this wonderful art we call jazz.

Dennis Owsley has been hosting a weekly radio show, "Jazz Unlimited," on St. Louis Public Radio since 1983. He has been a jazz album collector, aficionado, and historian since 1958 and has seen most of the major artists in jazz in live performance. He is the author of an award-winning book, "City of Gabriels—The Jazz History of St. Louis 1895-1973."

Nearly all the music heard on "Jazz Unlimited" is from Owsley's personal collection, a collection that now resides at Webster University's Eden Library. 

This collection is of particular note because it includes LPs from the '60s and '70s that document Gaslight Square and the Black Actors Group. These LPs are a treasure for historians of Saint Louis.

Much of the Owsley Collection is available for circulation in the Emerson Library stacks. 

Webster means practical learning

At Webster University, our goal is to help you be your best. With a low faculty to student ratio, students receive practical advice and experience from their professors. Our advisors and faculty put students first so you can succeed.

Arts in St. Louis

Check out these important St. Louis organizations.

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Only at Webster: Special Study Opportunity

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As a student musician, seize the opportunity to hone your skills in Vienna, home to legendary composers Beethoven, Mozart and Strauss. Webster University established its Vienna campus in 1981. Students typically attend the Vienna campus in the junior year spring semester. Study jazz with a Viennese artist, take courses in music history (including Vienna's music traditions), and experience the vibrancy of Europe's musical capital.

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Department of Music