why join jazz academy?

Belong. Jazz is an art form like no other. Once you learn it, you can play instantly with anyone else. Jam out with people you’ve just met or perform with friends anywhere in the world who are all speaking the same language.

Relationships. Playing jazz is an engaging conversation with other musicians.

Be your absolute best. You'll never know how good you could sound unless you train with a great teacher. Voice lessons teach you to sing properly and help you to consistently sound great.

Avoid fatigue, strain, and injury. Learning proper technique for a strong and healthy voice is the best way to prevent problems. Issues of tightness and diminished range are common with untrained singers. If left uncorrected, singers can damage their voices and develop more serious conditions, such as vocal nodules.

Build your confidence. As you train your voice, it will begin to come under your command. You will start to know what it can do and do those things consistently - whether that's reaching certain notes or having a particular sound come out. The nervousness you may feel singing around others will fade as you gain skills.

Get results faster. Taking voice lessons will create quick improvement with dedicated practice compared to learning to sing on your own. No matter what journey you're taking, you'll always get their sooner with someone who knows the way.

Invest in yourself. Lessons are an investment in the whole package of who you are and their value extends beyond vocal skills into the realm of your relationship with your self. Whether you have big, professional career goals or you simply want to sound better singing in the car - your voice is worth developing and protecting with healthy, strong technique.

The Most Highly Qualified Jazz Faculty in Southwest Michigan. From decorated performing artists to award-winning composers, our faculty is dedicated to learning about your musical goals and helping you achieve them. They have instrument specific degrees from renowned jazz programs at Manhattan School of Music, New England Conservatory, Temple University, University of Michigan, Michigan State University, and our own Western Michigan University. Our faculty are chosen for their teaching ability, their expertise as jazz musicians on their instrument, their passion for artistry, and their personal integrity. Learn more about our amazing faculty

The Only Comprehensive Jazz Education in Southwest Michigan. Jazz can be practiced by an individual, but it is only learned in a community setting through mentorship and group interaction. At the Jazz and Creative Institute, individual instruction, artistic mentorship, and group experience come together for students to truly grow and develop into an improvising musician. Additionally, Jazz Academy students can audition for our 18-piece large ensemble, the Kalamazoo Youth Jazz Orchestra, or the Lab Band for students wanting more group experience.

Musician Family Owned and Operated. Husband and wife team Benje and Ashley Daneman have been collaborating on successful projects since they met at Manhattan School of Music in New York City in 2008 - including raising three children. Both critically acclaimed performing artists and composers, the Danemans bring their belief in the value of music education to the forefront of the Jazz and Creative Institute. As co-directors and owners, they've assembled a team of professional musicians who share their passion and enthusiasm for quality music education. Learn more about our directors.

Integrative Performance Experiences. Students interact with peers by participating in performances, coached jam sessions, and clinics with faculty and other visiting artists. All included in the flat monthly tuition fee, these valuable experiences display and elaborate each student's achievements in their instrument of choice. Our directors seek out unique performance opportunities for our students as they arise in the greater Kalamazoo area in addition to regular recitals.

Online Student Portal for Easy Information Access. View our calendar, track attendance, make-ups, practice times, and repertoire. Contact teachers and keep track of your account.

Convenient Location, Practical for Families. Centrally located in downtown Kalamazoo, the Jazz and Creative Institute has tons of seating and a children's play area for younger siblings. If you want to drop a child off for lessons, head two doors down the street to Civil House Coffee for some focused work time. Learn more about our location.

Open 7 Days a Week for Today's Busy People. We offer lessons seven days a week to accommodate your busy schedule. Music lessons are billed monthly with no semester commitment. Monday - Friday 9am - 8pm; Saturday and Sunday 9am - 5pm.