Jazz & Pop


In the Jazz & Pop course you will design a significant part of your curriculum. You can align the course precisely to your needs, preferences, opportunities and ambitions. In Jazz & Pop, the further into the course, the more freedom you have. 

First year: broad development

All first-year students of Jazz & Pop will follow the same course, even if they have widely different backgrounds. You will be encouraged to develop a broad foundation and look beyond the music style that you have become acquainted with up to this point. You will receive lessons in:

  • Your major
  • Bands (including five different styles, improvisation techniques and studio experience)
  • Piano at your own level
  • Music production
  • Education
  • Music theory
  • Workshops and master classes by nationally and internationally renowned musicians.

The band Banda Magda was ‘band in residence’ for a week in November 2016. The band members taught masterclasses, offered coaching to student ensembles, and more.

You will also participate in a number of projects. At the end of the first year, you will have received enough information regarding the various aspects of studying music that you will be well able to make choices regarding the rest of your course. Whatever style you choose, there are always plenty of students to form a band with.

The ArtEZ Academy of Music pays a great deal of attention to health as part of its music programmes.

In the first year, you will have the opportunity to apply for admission to the Honours Programme, which is supplementary to the regular courses of your own Bachelor’s course.

You will also see students from other art disciplines at the ArtEZ studium generale. During this day programme full of debate, workshops, performances and lectures you will meet relevant speakers from the art, science and society. You are going with them in discussion and sharpens that way your opinion and thoughts.

Second year: electives

From the second year on, you will plan your own curriculum more and more. In addition to your major, you can select a portion of the subjects yourself. You can also make your own stylistic choices within the subjects. A broad range of electives are available to choose from, for example, a second instrument, music technology, mental training, and additional music business or educational classes. It is also possible to take electives at other ArtEZ locations. And of course you will play in multiple bands.

Third and fourth year: major, band coaching and graduation

In the third and fourth years, besides electives constituting a larger portion of your curriculum, the compulsory portion of your major consists of band coaching, research and your graduation project.

Band coaching is taught with a band you have put together with other students of the course. In such a band, everything is adapted to the realities of professional practice: you rehearse, you play both inside and outside ArtEZ some concerts and you spend a few days each year in a professional recording studio. Most of the bands take advantage of this studio time to record demos or even entire albums.

You will often be on stage: in ArtEZ’s own concert halls or on stages of partners or at festivals. In addition to playing music, attention is also dedicated to entrepreneurship, because you will be soon faced with the business side of your field. You can choose from a wide range of subjects in the field of the music business. Branding, Social Media, Production Management, Networking, Copyrights and Fundraising are examples. Assignments you do for these subjects connect to your own bands; that could be a coaching band, but also a band that you have with musicians from outside ArtEZ.

In the third study year, you can also participate in different internships in preparation for professional practice.

You can study abroad during the first half year of the fourth year. Many students find this particularly valuable.

Once you have completed all the components of the Bachelor’s, you may do your final audition. This will be a concert or a project that you design entirely yourself based on your graduation specialisation. That can mean a full jazz programme, but also pop, heavy metal, big-band jazz, salsa or an intimate singer-songwriter programme. Students taking the Composition for Film and Theatre major graduate with a presentation of films, dance or theatre for which they have written the music.

ArtEZ finals

All students of Jazz & Pop will present their graduation work during the ArtEZ finals. A visit to one of the graduation exhibitions is a must if you are thinking about taking the Jazz & Pop course.