Straight Ahead Jazz Camp 2017

July 17 - 21, 2017 - 12:00 am - 9:00 am

Columbia College Chicago | 1014 S. Michigan Avenue

Online registration is closed.  Onsite registration for the full week begins Monday, 17 at 9:30AM. Download the Camp Brochure 


Who says camp is just for kids? Straight Ahead Jazz Camp brings together educators, musicians and music lovers 18 and up for a fascinating week-long exploration of the inner workings of jazz.  Held at Columbia College Chicago, each day of the camp features a special guest artist along with hands-on workshops, clinics, lectures and jam sessions by noted musicians and experts from Chicago and beyond.


2017 Special Guest Artists (artists are subject to change)

  • Premier composer, educator and bassist Rufus Reid
  • Pianist, professor and author of David Baker: A Legacy in the Music Monika Herzig, 
  • Internationally renowned jazz pianist, composer and teacher Barry Harris
  • Composer, educator and exemplar of the Chicago tenor tradition, Ari Brown
  • Prolific trumpeter, composer, educator and entrepreneur Dave Douglas


2017 Registration Fees

Non Member

Early registration: $225 before June 1

Regular registration: $285 through July 17


Jazz Institute of Chicago Members (with member discount codes sent via email)

Early registration: $190 before June 1

Regular registration: $250 through July 17




Straight Ahead Jazz Camp 2017 Special Guest Artists


Monday: Rufus Reid
Rufus Reid is one of today’s premiere bassists, educators and composers. Co-founder of the Jazz Studies and Performance Program at William Paterson University (New Jersey), Rufus was the 2016 Harvard Jazz Master in Residence, and his book, The Evolving Bassist, published since 1974, is widely regarded as the definitive bass method. A participant in the BMI Jazz Composers Workshop, he has forced since 2011 on writing symphonic works. His composition “Lake Tyrrell In Innisfree” was premiered by the Raleigh Civic Orchestra in April, and he comes to us fresh from the 2017 Symposium of the International Society of Jazz Arrangers and Composers. Born in Atlanta and raised in Sacramento, Rufus began his professional career in Chicago. He has toured and recorded with countless major artists, perhaps most famously with Dexter Gordon, and today leads his Out Front Trio. See more at


Tuesday: Monika Herzig

In 1987, the pedagogical institute in Weingarten, Germany awarded a scholarship for a one-year exchange program at the University of Alabama to one of their students, jazz pianist Monika Herzig. Together with her partner and guitarist Peter Kienle, she arrived in the States on a one-way ticket, with one suitcase of belongings and one guitar in August 1988.  She completed her Doctorate in Music Education and Jazz Studies at Indiana University, where she is now a faculty member in Arts Administration. Her book “David Baker – A Legacy in Music” was released November 2011 on IU Press, a Listener’s Guide to Chick Corea is forthcoming on Littlefield & Rowan. As a touring jazz pianist, she has performed at many prestigious jazz clubs and festivals.  See more at


Wednesday: Barry Harris
Barry Harris, born in Detroit in 1929, is the renowned keeper of the flame of bebop pianism. A contemporary and devoted interpreter of the works of Bud Powell and Thelonious Monk, he has split his career between performance (with Miles Davis, Cannonball Adderley, Coleman Hawkins and fellow pianist Tommy Flanagan, among others) and jazz education for instrumentalists and vocalists, notably at the Jazz Cultural Theater in New York City, which he co-founded in 1982. He has disseminated his codified concepts, methodology and techniques for improvisation, harmonic movement and theory for decades through lectures, workshops and videos. In 1989 he was recognized as a Jazz Master by the National Endowment for the Arts. His official website is


Thursday: Ari Brown
Ari Brown is a reeds specialist whose self-expression ranges with equal conviction from the structures of hard bop and post-bop to the freedoms of the jazz avant-garde. Now celebrated as a Chicago stalwart, Ari began as a teen playing piano in R&B and soul bands, but switched to saxophone in 1965. During his years at Wilson (now Kennedy-King) College, he met the young musicians who would soon form the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians (AACM), which he joined in 1971. He was a member of pianist Ken Chaney’s band The Awakening in the ’70s, Elvin Jones’ Jazz Machine in the ’80s, and joined Kahil El’Zabar’s Ritual Trio in the ’90s. He’s recorded with all those ensembles, as well as with Orbert Davis, the Chicago Jazz Philharmonic, El’Zabar and Fareed Haque in the Juba Collective, and has produced four albums of his own on Delmark Records. Ari is a frequent attraction at Chicago venues and events including the Jazz Showcase, the Hyde Park Jazz Festival and the Museum of Contemporary Arts’ Jazz on the Terrace series. See his quintet’s performance at the 2014 Chicago Jazz Festival on YouTube.


Friday: Dave Douglas
Dave Douglas is a blazing and prolific trumpeter – also a composer, educator and entrepreneur known for stylistic breadth and a diversity of simultaneous activities. Besides more than 40 albums under his leadership, he co-leads a quintet he co-leads a quintet Joe Lovano, has been in the front line of John Zorn’s Masada Quartet, and was a member of Myra Melford’s Same River Twice. Dave’s powerful originality has led to honors including a Guggenheim Fellowship, an Aaron Copland Award, and two Grammy® nominations. He also operates his own innovative record label, Greenleaf Music, has held such prestigious positions as Jazz Artist in Residence at the Royal Academy of Music in London,
Artistic Director of the Bergamo Jazz Festival (Italy), and artistic director of the Workshop in Jazz and Creative Music at The Banff Center in Canada. Dave co-founded and has directed the Festival of New Trumpet Music, and co-hosts the podcast Noise From The Deep. He appeared in February at Constellation with his electronically-enhanced band High Risk. Read about him at and



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