Zegree: First vocal jazz camp at IU ‘overwhelmingly positive’

The Jacobs School of Music’s summer festival has wrapped up, but Steve Zegree is still basking in the glow of his first vocal jazz camp held on the Bloomington campus.

He started the camp at Western Michigan University — where he taught before coming to IU — about a decade ago, but declared this year one of his best camps ever.


Jacobs School of Music professor Steve Zegree recently conducted his first vocal jazz camp at IU Bloomington.

“We like to limit the camp to 40 participants, including high school and college students and teachers, plus interested adults. But this year, we had an overfull camp with 42 campers from 16 states, as well as Sweden and Switzerland,” Zegree told Art at IU via email. “And the response from campers was overwhelming positive, ranging from ‘best week ever’ to ‘life changing.’ I’m glad the Jacobs School of Music was able to make room for our vocal jazz camp in spite of an already-full docket of summer programs and concerts.”

The camp includes large ensemble rehearsal techniques, combo and solo singing, private jazz voice coaching, improvisation, jazz theory and arranging, sight-reading skills and tips on developing a professional music career.

Zegree said he also tried out a few new things this year that went over big with students, including evening solo concerts at downtown martini bar Serendipity and a final concert at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater.

“It was such a treat and thrill to watch all of the campers, some as young as 14, to get up and perform a solo with a jazz trio in a professional venue. And our final concert was attended by more than 350 people, and the crowd loved it,” he said. “We hope to continue to bring national and international focus and attention to the new jazz voice program at the Jacobs School of Music through our camp, which students of all ages love attending and experiencing.”

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