Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Vocal jazz repertoire from 1920-1960: A selection of unpublished repertoire by the Mills Brothers, the Boswell Sisters, and the Hi -Lo's for use in classical choral programming
by Brooks, Dawn Elizabeth, D.M.A., University of Southern California, 2009, 127; 3389620
Abstract (Summary)

This dissertation proposes that conductors should consider quality vocal jazz arrangements for traditional choral concert programs. The music offers an opportunity for education in many areas of jazz music and in the social and cultural aspects of American history. In addition to published works, jazz groups' recorded arrangements, if transcribed, are ideal for choirs. The author suggests that this music is appropriate for women's, men's, and mixed ensembles, and encourages that conductors transcribe recordings of unpublished repertoire for performance.

Educational topics related to the performance of vocal jazz can include: aspects of jazz history, biographical information about the performers and songwriters, instruction about healthy vocal versatility, melodic and rhythmic musicianship skills, and an appreciation of jazz arranging. Teaching improvisation, as an essential component of jazz music, is considered necessary by jazz educators. Introducing concepts of beginning improvisation into a choral rehearsal setting can be effective, and some methods will be suggested.

The Mills Brother, The Boswell Sisters, and The Hi-Lo's are used as examples of early vocal jazz groups whose repertoire deserves attention. A biography of each ensemble, suggestions of possible repertoire for use by choral ensembles, and analysis of five arrangements transcribed by the author are included as support for the thesis of the paper. Finally, to assist choral conductors who are interested in educating themselves about vocal jazz, the author has included a chapter suggesting various ways to introduce jazz concepts to choir, including: repertoire, vocal production, listening exercises, rhythmic exercises, interpretation of lyrics, and performance decisions.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Solomon, Magen
Commitee: Korb, Kristin, Scheibe, Jo-Michael
School: University of Southern California
Department: Choral Music
School Location: United States -- California
Source: DAI-A 71/01, Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Music
Keywords: Boswell Sisters, Brooks, Shelton, Choral programming, Hi-Lo's, Jazz, Jazz repertoire, Mills Brothers, Vocal
Publication Number: 3389620
ISBN: 978-1-109-56359-7
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