Saturday Night Jazz at kj's hideaway

Experience Jazz, Grades 7-12: Applications Due March 5!

Featured Twin Cities


Experience Jazz is a genre-bridging music ensemble program for aspiring musical artists with a common desire to make new music rooted in jazz, blues, pop and hip-hop, to create and collaborate together.

While rooted in jazz, this program embraces the power and artistry of hiphop, rhythm & blues, and other genres students and instructors want to explore together. Minnesota Jazz Education strives to bring together students of diverse cultural and musical backgrounds in an innovative music-making environment. Now in its 4th year, Experience Jazz has had a meaningful impact on area youth–last year’s students created and released a whole album while working from home, which was recently featured in the Star Tribune! Downbeat Magazine will also publish a feature on the program in their April issue. There is no other program like it in Minnesota!

This innovative weekly combo program takes place every spring semester as an incubator for student musicians to create, collaborate and share new music together. Presented in partnership with High School for Recording Arts (HSRA), students typically rehearse together in HSRA’s state-of-the-art Studio 4. Due to COVID-19, the 2021 program will take place online, with the possibility of moving in person half-way through the 12-week program. Students can also participate in workshops presented by industry professionals, focused on teaching students new skills, and providing the hands-on experience of integrating musical styles.

Combo instruction session, Experience Jazz

Experience Jazz is open to instrumentalists, vocalists, rappers, poets, DJs, producers, beat makers, songwriters and other aspiring musical artists of all skill levels, grades 7-12. No prior jazz experience required!

After auditioning, accepted students will be placed into one of 3 groups. Each group is focused on a different musical style and based on student interest. The groups are led by the following teachers and artists of color: Jeff Bailey with Cody LeDuc, Kavyesh Kaviraj with DeCarlo Jackson, and DJ Michel.Be with DJ Mickey Breeze. Learn more about these incredible teachers here.

Instructor Kavyesh Kaviraj

Deadline for applications is Friday, March 5, which includes an audio and/or video audition. The program runs Saturdays 10:30am-12:30pm, March 13-June 12. Learn more here. Due to limited space, we encourage interested students to apply as soon as possible. Families will be contacted by mid-March to confirm acceptance to the program.

How to Apply for Experience Jazz 2021
(1) Complete the application form (online)
(2) Submit an audition (audio and/or video)


Experience Jazz student ensemble (2019)

Please submit a video and/or audio recording that will give us an idea of your musical style. Recording should show you performing (and improvising, if possible!) on 2 separate songs, 1-2 minutes each of contrasting styles or feels (e.g. one ballad and one upbeat tune; one blues and one R&B). We want to get an idea of your playing ability and style. Songs can be performed a cappella (preferably with a click or metronome), with live accompaniment and/or pre-recorded backing tracks. Info on how to submit your audition can be found in the application form. Your application will only be considered if you fill out the Application Form and submit 2 recordings.

Learn more and find application at


MJE values equity, diversity and inclusion and is working on meaningful ways to address racial justice in jazz today, in the future and throughout the history of the art form. Minnesota Jazz Education (MJE) is a 501(c)(3) arts education organization that was founded in 1997 as the Dakota Foundation for Jazz Education.