The New Jazz Age: Fall for Jazz at Any Age

Kristen Schmidt


Jazz Arts Group's PBJ & Jazz concert series is specially designed for young children. It's meant to be fun and interactive, and little ones are treated to a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, cookie and juice. The series originated at the defunct Columbus Music Hall with educator and jazz aficionado Becky Ogden (read about her Bungalow Jazz series on page 56) and is now at the Lincoln Theatre. The next performance is Dec. 6 with the Rob Parton Quintet with Kristy Parton.


For high school-age jazz musicians, a week at Ohio State Jazz Camp is about as immersive an experience as they can get. Students live on campus for a week, working side by side with School of Music faculty and students to improve their skills. There are master classes, career exploration workshops and, of course, lots of music making. Professor Ted McDaniel, who has directed the Ohio State Jazz Ensemble since 1990, runs the program.

Young adults

Every Wednesday night, more than 100 people meet at Nyoh's Buckeye Bar not to line dance like most nights, but to Lindy hop to jazz from the swing era. SwingColumbus, an all-volunteer organization, runs the weekly event that starts with a lesson for beginners-partner not required. Part of the joy of swing dancing is changing partners. Says SwingColumbus president Gail Clendenin, "It's like having a conversation, and you get to have these conversations with people with different personalities and styles."


For an enriched experience at a Columbus Jazz Orchestra performance, attend a pre-concert Offstage at the Jazz Academy workshop. CJO artistic director Byron Stripling hosts a conversation with a guest artist, giving the audience terrific insight and perspective on the musician and the program. The next opportunity is in February 2015 with vocalist Dee Daniels.