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NJW Youth Programs

NJW Youth Programs

The mission of National Jazz Workshop youth program is to offer the highest level of instruction while promoting the jazz art form.


NJW All-Star Big Band

The NJW All-Star Big Band is audition-based and directed by Matt Niess. These select young musicians rehearse weekly and have the opportunity to participate in clinics and perform with leading players in the industry. The band is made up of high school students from Virginia, Maryland, West Virginia, and Washington, D.C.


NJW Junior Jazz Academy

Sunday, July 14 – Friday, July 19, 2024

 Junior Jazz Academy (JJA) returns to National Jazz Workshop this summer! Students in 6th through 8th grade (younger or older possible, contact for more information) who play trumpet, saxophone, flute, clarinet, trombone, bass trombone or tuba are invited to apply for this track. JJA is available as a commuter-only option and includes lunch each day. Registration is $350 per participant; early drop and late pickup are available.

Sample Schedule

9:45am: Drop Off
10:00am: Jazz Warm-Up
10:30am: Rehearsal
12:00pm: Lunch
1:00pm: Masterclass/Concert
2:30pm: Rehearsal
3:30pm:  Masterclass/Concert
4:30–5:00pm:  Pick Up

Rhythm instruments (piano, guitar, bass, drums, percussion) may attend camp but depending on ability will be placed in an ensemble or instructional classes.


Clinicians &

Guest Artists

Clinicians and guest artists have included nationally recognized artists such as Doc Severinsen, Wynton Marsalis, Sal Lazono, Randy Brecker, Charlie Young,  Alan Baylock, Victor Provost, Terell Stafford, Brian Lynch, Marshall Gilkes, and many musicians from D.C. military jazz bands. 

NJW ALL-Star Big Band Solo Spotlight featuring Zach Niess, Elliot Bernard, and Peter Hansel.
Matt Niess & The Capitol Bones

NJW ALL-Star Big Band Solo Spotlight featuring Zach Niess, Elliot Bernard, and Peter Hansel.

Extraordinary Performance Opportunities

The All-Stars have performed at the Kennedy Center, Blues Alley, Union Stage, Jammin’ Java, Artisphere, the Historic Mint in New Orleans, Mid-Atlantic Jazz Festival, Washington DC Big Band Jam, Chantilly Jazz Festival, Essentially Ellington, and Jazz Education Network Conferences in Dallas, New Orleans, and Louisville.
Jazz Music

The NJW All-Stars program is temporarily paused and members are not currently rehearsing. Please check back for audition information.

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