The Oakland Jazz Choir reaches out into the community by bringing vocal jazz into the Oakland public schools annually. The musical art form of Jazz is our focus at these in-school appearances. Our goal is to introduce young people specifically to choral jazz through education, demonstration and participation.

A typical in-school session involves an explanation of the basic elements of Jazz, including swing, improvisation and syncopation. We incorporate familiar songs to demonstrate these elements. We also perform portions of our choral arrangements, accompanied by our pianist, so they can see and hear how it all comes together. And we engage in active participation with the students, including imitation, call & response and improvisation. That is the part the kids really like!

Our ultimate mission is to inspire these young people to pursue their musical inclinations and to realize that they can make music with the instrument of their own bodies. We know our work is done when they come up to ask for our autographs! (As if we were pop stars!)

If you are interested in having OJC come to your school send us an email:

Thank you to the Lowell Berry Foundation for its generous contribution, which helps us achieve this goal.

OJC Jazz Handbook for Kids

This version of the handbook is ready for reproduction
Cover Page
Pages 1 and 6
Pages 5 and 2
Pages 3 and 4

This version of the handbook lists the pages in order for easier reading
Page 1
Page 2
Page 3
Page 4
Page 5
Page 6
Back Page WEBMASTER - Bryan Shaner