Jazz Day

Thursday, Feb. 1, 2024, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Jazz Day is a unique opportunity for high school jazz bands and their directors to perform for each other and NIU School of Music faculty members. Each band performs a 20-minute concert in the Music Building concert hall or recital hall, followed by a 20-minute clinic session conducted by NIU faculty. Students also participate in individual instrumental clinics led by NIU faculty and a guest clinician. Outstanding soloists will receive scholarships to our Jazz Combo Day!

View a Sample Jazz Day schedule (XLSX)


  • Cost: $250 per school (due two weeks before event)
  • Registration deadline: Dec. 1, 2023
    • This clinic is limited to 16 schools

Online Registration

Be sure to register by the deadline. A registration fee is charged for each ensemble and is due two weeks before the event date.


If you cancel five or more business days before the event, you may request a refund from Kristin Sherman at ksherman2@niu.edu or 815-753-1450. No refunds will be made after this time unless NIU cancels the event.


Students work with several NIU faculty members, including:

Guest Clinician


Erica von Kleist

Multi-instrumentalist and comedian Erica von Kleist has led many lives as a musician and producer, leading the charge as woodwind specialist, pianist, writer, and educator. After receiving the first jazz bachelor’s degree in the history of the Juilliard School, Erica went on to tour and record with Sean Jones, Wynton Marsalis and the Jazz at Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra, spent time on Broadway in the pits of The Addams Family, Chorusline and Gypsy, and recorded on five Grammy-Nominated recordings. As a bandleader Erica has released five albums, most recently "Sax & Taps" with DeWitt Fleming Jr, live at Dizzy's Club. In 2012 Erica relocated from NYC to the big sky state of Montana where she started several business initiatives, and discovered her songwriting and comedy abilities. During the #MeToo movement, Erica reminisced on her experiences as the only female in countless professional situations in jazz, and began writing songs about the struggles that women face. Her songs snowballed into a musical comedy show she now tours with, in addition to a full staged musical. In 2020 Erica joined forces with several writers and editors in Montana to co-write "Your Musical is Cancelled. The Musical!" which went on to win “Best Feature” at the SoCal Film Awards and “Best Comedy” at the Toronto Alternative Film Festival, and was an official selection for the New York Independent Film Festival. As an educator, Erica has been a guest artist at the Juilliard School, Manhattan School of Music, UNC Greensboro, Purdue University among many others, and a mentor for Carnegie Hall's NYO Jazz program and Jazz at Lincoln Center. In 2019 she published "A Cool Approach to Jazz Theory '', a workbook curriculum for beginning improvisers. As a producer and entrepreneur, Erica has been at the helm of her company Purusance Productions since, and has booked and produced hundreds of private and public performances for various artists. Currently her company is helping support and promote her many projects.

Contact Us

College of Visual and Performing Arts
Office of External Programs

Music Building 132

Kristin Sherman

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Online Office Hours

Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
(lunch from noon – 1 p.m.)

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