The Bachelor's program in Jazz and Popular Music at the Mainz School of Music combines a technical foundation and "trade skills" with artistic freedom, and tradition with the search for one's own voice. The first two academic years are focused on basics, and impart a thorough knowledge of technical skills in a principle and secondary instrument, basic theoretical and historical knowledge, arrangement techniques, knowledge of the jazz tradition (standards, transcriptions, etc.), as well as a familiarity with notation software and studio technology. Alongside jazz, popular music is also studied. In the third and fourth academic years, the focus shifts to the development of an artistic personality.
All instruments typical of jazz, as well as percussion and voice, may be selected as a primary instrument. A unique aspect of the program in Mainz is that students have a free choice of their secondary instrument. As a fundamental knowledge of piano is provided through the "Piano Class" course (voicings, cadences, accompaniment patterns), a singer can study contrabass as his or her secondary instrument, or a saxophonist can study singing.
Over the course of each term, approximately 15 combos form an active part of the curriculum in which students acquaint themselves with classic styles and ensemble techniques, mostly by playing the repertoire of legendary jazz and pop greats (George Gershwin, Miles Davis, Stevie Wonder, etc.). They then present their work at the highly popular end-of-semester concerts.
Every semester, each specialized group (saxophone, singing, piano etc.) chooses a topic for the "Specific Instrumental or Vocal Project" course, which they then partially present in individual project concerts, such as e.g. "The Piano Forum" (link to projects: "The Piano Forum") led by Professor Sebastian Sternal, which focuses on topics dealing with jazz piano such as "Tribute to Thelonius Monk" or "Electric Piano," and includes all jazz piano students. Music theory instruction is brought to life by the innovative internet-platform miLAN, developed by Konrad Georgi. Numerous inter-departmental projects and workshops featuring international guests also provide an additional source of inspiration for students.
The "intermediate exam" (module artistic training I) takes place at the end of the fourth semester and tests fundamental technical skills on the instrument(s) and a student's knowledge of the (jazz and pop) traditions. Following the exam, the course load lessens in order to provide space for the development of each student’s musical vision. At the same time, pedagogical principles are also taught, increasing students’ versatility.
At the end of the course, students are given a chance to demonstrate their artistic maturity in numerous fields (including elements such as sound, light, promotion, etc.) through a public concert of their own design.
The Master's program in Jazz and Popular Music at the Mainz School of Music deepens the skills developed in the Bachelor's program, and focuses on the development of the student's own ideas and projects. A unique aspect of the Master's program in Mainz is that each student devotes him or herself to a jazz research project, receiving individual supervision from the department's faculty. One course of study, for example, developed a noted survey concerning jazz and pop music taught at the music schools of the Landesverband der Musikschulen (LVdM) RLP; in another, a nationally recognized detailed alumni questionnaire was developed. Another student researched the topic of "improvisation," while others closely analyzed the work of individual jazz musicians. Students concentrating on composition also have the opportunity to develop an orchestra project. Course offerings include "advanced theory" as well as ensembles. At the end of the two-year course, students give a final public concert (60 minutes), and present their research and the results from their Master's coursework.
Our teacher training programs prepare you for a job as a music teacher at the Gymnasium (no LA for elementary school and Realschule+, this is offered in Koblenz) within the framework of a five-year training. At the Hochschule für Musik Mainz, you can expect a modern teacher training program geared towards practical work in schools in combination with a high-quality artistic education.
Our teacher training programs prepare you for a job as a music teacher at the Gymnasium within the framework of a five-year education. At the Mainz University of Music, you can expect a modern teacher training program geared towards practical work in schools, combined with high-quality artistic training.
The bachelor's degree program is an undergraduate artistic and artistic-pedagogical course of study leading to a first academic degree qualifying for a profession.
Its aim is to provide persons with sufficient pedagogical and artistic aptitude with the necessary artistic and pedagogical as well as other relevant basic skills and competencies required for successful work as a full-time musician and pedagogue in the professional fields of elementary music pedagogy as well as instrumental pedagogy and/or vocal pedagogy.