DOCTORAL THESIS: INTRODUCTION TO JAZZ IMPROVISATION FOR CLASSICAL PERCUSSIONISTS
As the thesis of his Doctoral degree, James is currently working on solo vibraphone and marimba arrangements of his jazz compositions as a portal into jazz improvisation for classical percussionists. One of the many fears of classically trained musicians is composing coherent musical content from minimal guidelines in real time, known as improvising. James' approach to his own compositions walks the performer through a series of concepts of improvisation, ultimately leading to a thorough understanding of the foundation of improvisation. To find out more about this project, contact James now!
DOCTORAL RESEARCH PROJECT: HISTORY AND EVOLUTION OF PERCUSSION IN THE MUSICAL THEATRE
As part of his Doctoral degree, James conducted an extended research project in the History and Evolution of Percussion in the Musical Theatre, spanning over 150 years of history from its roots in opera to the indepenant identity of the American Musical Theatre. To find out more about this project, contact James now!
MASTERS RESEARCH PROJECT: MOTIVATIONAL REHEARSAL METHODS AND TECHNIQUES
As part of his Masters degree, James conducted a research project in motivational rehearsal methods and techniques - discovering how to effectively develop the up and coming student talent. Across three ensembes, James trialled several theories of education and achieved stunning results with his ensemble. The key to motivation is positivity. To find out more about this project, contact James now!
As a strong advocate for education in the arts, James offers a variety of workshop programs for highs school students and ensemble programs, as well as College and University level students and ensembles. James specialises in ensemble direction and conducting, understanding style and developing your jazz ensemble and percussion program,
vibraphone technique and performance, and develping improvisation (basics to advanced).
Contact James to ask about more information on workshops for your music program.
James presented an incredible hands on workshop at the Australian Percussion Academy,
which included great ideas, approaches and methodologies for exploring vibraphone
technique including mallet damping, pedalling, phrasing and controlling sound. Further
to vibraphone technique instruction, the APA students had an opportunity to improve their
skills in jazz improvisation. This workshop was truly exceptional, educational and very
inspiring. Brilliant stuff!
Sergei Golovko, Director Australian Percussion Academy, Melbourne
Artistic Director of the AMC
James imparted much practical and experiential knowledge to our students regarding his learned approach at being an industry professional in areas of music business and career development. The manner in which the content was delivered encouraged students to thinkfor themselves and become independent learners, and was engaging, informative, and highly professional.
Steve Newcomb, Director of Jazz, Queensland Conservatorium of Music
James' passion and expertise for percussion, combined with his approachable personality ensured that our students were completely engaged for the entire session. His ability to
work from the individual levels of each of the students allowed everyone to exceed their
own expectations while working with a particularly challenging composition. We are already looking forward to his next visit!
Matt Christensen, Music Teacher, Queensland Academy of Creavtive Industries
We had a great session with James and the students at the Sydney Con. He’s a very fine vibraphonist and discussed many areas of vibraphone technique and performance, as well as sharing some useful insight and ideas for developing skills in jazz improvisation for the non-improvising percussionist.
Daryl Pratt, Director of Percussion, Sydney Conservatorium of Music