Jazz Ensembles


Update for the 2021–2022 Academic Year

Our ensembles are committed to providing meaningful and educational experiences. Rehearsals and performances will return to pre-COVID practices (with possible exceptions) and are subject to change as health and safety guidelines evolve throughout the academic year.

We are excited to make music together again!

Learn about our ensembles below.

Auditions are required for participation in any big band, combo, the Show Band and for applied instruction. Music majors and non-majors are welcome to join!

Auditions will be held during the first week of Autumn semester. Visit Jazz Auditions.

University Jazz Ensemble

The Jazz Studies area provides performance opportunities in three big bands, six combos, a commercial music show band and Gospel and Spiritual choir. The jazz faculty are devoted to rehearsing, arranging and performing all styles of literature. 

Big Bands

Ohio State Jazz Ensemble, Jazz Lab Ensemble (autumn/spring); Jazz Workshop Band (spring only)


Art Blakey, Fusion, Hard Bop, New Orleans Traditional Swing, Latin Jazz

Ohio Show Band

The Ohio Show Band is a contemporary music ensemble that performs tour-quality shows with musical styles from R&B, gospel, and pop to neo-soul, contemporary Christian and fusion, while incorporating vocalists, automated lighting, production sequences, dance, video sync and the latest computer-based production software.

Gospel and Spiritual Choir

Gospel Choir is a non-auditioned group for students of all majors who enjoy or are curious about singing gospel music. Singers develop skills within the framework of a strong aural tradition and explore techniques of improvisation as well. The group rehearses a wide variety of gospel literature and performs for the Columbus community at least once per semester.

Learning and performing gospel music is not only fun and motivating, but also a great way to make new friends through this diverse music experience. Gospel music is very popular and is performed in many communities across the globe. The ensemble is designed as a comprehensive standard-based vocal music curriculum that provides students with experiences in music and religious settings derived from the African American religious experience.

There is no need to be an advanced singer to be a member. If you are a musician (piano, bass, guitar, drums, etc.) consider joining as a member who can accompany the choir. 

Music majors may participate in this group for Small Ensemble credit only, and music education majors are especially encouraged to do so. 

Undergraduate: MUSIC 2208.16 | Graduate: MUSIC 7208.16
Classes meet Tu/Th 5:206:15 p.m. | Milton V. Ruffin, director


Contact Professor Shawn Wallace, area head of Jazz Studies, at wallace.376@osu.edu, 614-292-2678, 407 Hughes Hall.