Youth Jazz Ensemble

uwm youth jazz ensemble


Location: UWM Music Building
Rosemary Walzer,

The UW-Milwaukee Youth Jazz Ensemble (UJAY) is an auditioned group, under the direction of saxophonist Rosemary Walzer, that is comprised of the Greater Milwaukee Area’s finest high school jazz musicians. Since 1992, students have experienced jazz education in a professional-style setting, received extra instruction from guest artists/clinicians, and performed in the University and Milwaukee jazz communities.

Among the performance opportunity highlights is the annual UWM Woody Herman Jazz Festival. The Festival comprises of workshops and masterclasses for students/teachers with our guest artist and clinicians and culminates with a concert featuring the UWM Youth Jazz Ensemble, the UWM Jazz Ensemble, and the Milwaukee Jazz Orchestra, a group consisting of the top professional jazz musicians in the Milwaukee area. Previous guest artists have included Jon Faddis (trumpet), Jim Pugh (trombone), Eddie Gomez (bass), Frank Tiberi (saxophone), Roger Ingram (trumpet), and, most recently, vocalist Steve March-Tormé.

The Youth Jazz Ensemble program works in cooperation with high school music programs and relies on the support of school band directors and private teachers throughout SE Wisconsin.

Ensemble rehearsals take place in UW-Milwaukee’s Music Building on Thursday evenings from 6:00-7:30pm and Improvisation Lab (Combo) rehearses from 7:30-8:15pm.

2019-20 Tuition & Concert Dates

First-year UJAY students: $350
Returning UJAY students: $300

All performances at 7:30PM in the Helene Zelazo Center for the Performing Arts

Sunday October 27, 2019 at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday December 15, 2019 at 7:30 p.m.
Friday February 7, 2020 at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday May 3, 2020 at 7:30 p.m.


Spring Entrance Auditions

To qualify to participate in UJAY, students must pass an entrance audition and remain enrolled in some aspect of their school’s music program.

Once confirmed, saxophone, trumpet and trombone players will participate in a second audition for chair placement on Thursday, September 5, 2019.


-Sight-Reading Material presented the day of the audition.
-An improvised solo on a jazz standard or 12-Bar Blues (student’s choice)

All auditions held in the UWM Music Building Room 150 unless otherwise noted.

  • Thursday, May 16 6–8 p.m.
  • Sunday, May 19 3–6 p.m.
  • Wednesday, May 22 3–6 p.m.
  • Thursday, May 23 6–8 p.m.
  • Thursday, May 30 6–8 p.m.

Register Now

Questions: Rosemary Walzer,