Jazz @ Amherst

UPDATE-Looking to the Fall 2020 Semester

AUDITION INFO-we have now posted our materials for all students who wish to join the Jazz Performance Program. This includes the Jazz Ensemble and/or Jazz Combos. Please find this info in a Google Space linked here: 



With the current state of things as related to the Covid-19 situation, we know current and newly-admitted students may have questions/concerns as to our plans for the Fall Semester.

We plan to have all of the Jazz@Amherst performance opportunities available. We will, of course, adapt to the reality that is when September rolls around. Please do plan to participate fully with us in the Jazz Ensemble and/or the Jazz Combos program. We look forward to welcoming everyone back to our Jazz@Amherst Family. Until then, stay safe and keep playing! A request for our current students....spread the word and or course, stay in touch!

Welcome to the new Jazz@Amherst website! 

Prospective and current students: read below to find out more about our program and how you can be a part of it. Scroll further down for Jazz @ Amherst news.


What is Jazz@Amherst?

The Combo Program: small jazz groups, tailored to individual levels of experience and preferred styles. Student-led and faculty-coached, the combos are a great way to grow as a gigging musician.

The Jazz Ensemble: our "big band" jazz ensemble, directed by Bruce Diehl. The ensemble plays all sorts of charts, from Duke Ellington to Fred Sturm, and plays an original piece each year as part of our McBride '59 Commission Series.

Jazz Studies Courses: from basic jazz theory to seminars on improvised music, Amherst College offers a diverse set of courses related to Jazz Studies, taught by Prof. Robinson, Senior Lecturer Diehl and welcome back to Prof. Harper '90. Additionally, the Music Department brings highly respected scholars to speak and perform every semester.

Extra-departmental student projects: from jazz-hip-hop fusion bands to 10-piece swing ensembles, Amherst student-musicians are constantly exploring jazz outside of the classroom or recital hall. Paying gigs are common for experienced musicians, both on and off campus, and even sometimes involve department faculty.

Prospective students:

We'd love to hear from you, and even host you for a daytime visit and evening rehearsal. Click here for more details, including tips for how to include jazz in your application. Also notice the new FAQ section at the end of the document linked above.

Current students:

Want to join our program: we want you to as well! Click here for audition materials, and make sure to email bpdiehl@amherst.edu with any questions.


Jazz @ Amherst wants to hear from Amherst Alums who participated in the jazz program during their time at Amherst. Please feel free to share via email and/or facebook what you have been up to, and where life has taken you to be.

What is Hip?

Current news about Jazz-related departmental happenings - check back frequently!

We are sorry to need to cancel our various Jazz concerts that were scheduled throughout the current semester. We anticipate starting things back up in the Fall. Wishing everyone a safe Spring Semester.

Facebook Presence!

Be sure to like Amherst College Jazz on Facebook - ACJE Facebook Page

Upcoming Concerts!

Jazz Faculty Concert Experience

Sunday, August 28, 2020 at 7pm in Buckley Recital Hall and Remote. 

Last Updated: Aug. 13, 2020