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413 N. Main St. #5
Glen Ellyn, IL 60137


A music school devoted to joyful, servant-hearted musicianship in Glen Ellyn, Wheaton, and beyond.  Piano, Violin, Guitar, Voice, Cello, and Flute Lessons. 

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Summer '18 JAZZ CAMP

I wish I could jam with other musicians...
I wish I could take my improv skills to the next level...
I wish I could play in a jazz combo...
I wish I could hang out with real jazz musicians from the Chicago jazz scene...
I wish...

Wish no longer. 

Just sign up for our...

summer JAZZ CAMP - july 8-13, 2019

...and your wishes will come true!!

The Institute for Jazz Studies at Bellas Artes School of Music is excited to announce our second annual week long summer Jazz camp.  This will be a summer jazz immersion experience for students age 12-18.  

The Details:

  • July 8-13 (Monday to Friday 10am-1pm; Saturday 10:30am-11:30am)

    • Instruction in jazz history and theory

    • Instrumental masterclasses

    • Improvisation Workshops

    • Transcription Tutorial

    • Daily combo rehearsals

    • Final Concert Saturday, July 13, 10:30am at First United Methodist Church in Glen Ellyn in conjunction with JazzUp Glen Ellyn festival

  • Welcoming students of drums, piano, guitar, bass, saxophone, trumpet, trombone, clarinet, vibraphone, violin and more!

  • Students age 12-18

  • Outstanding faculty: Artie Black (sax), Lucas Gillan (drums), Matt Peterson (piano), James Ross (bass) and Kevin Brown (guitar)

  • Located at our Wheaton campus (400 W Roosevelt Rd, Wheaton, IL 60187)

  • Price: $300  ($25 non-refundable deposit at the time of registration, $275 due June 24, 2019)

  • FREE T-Shirt Included

  • E-mail: for an info/registration packet.

Daily Schedule:

10-10:30am - Jazz History
10:30-11am - Jazz Theory
11am-12pm- Instrumental/Improvisation Masterclasses
12pm-1pm - Combo Rehearsals

 **** This year the camp will have a special focus on the importance of TRANSCRIPTION and will include faculty transcription presentations!!!

 Camp Syllabus:

  • JAZZ HISTORY - Each day we will look at the key stylistic elements and figures of a period of jazz history.

    • Monday - Sydney Bechet: Early Jazz

    • Tuesday - Duke Ellington: Swing Music

    • Wednesday - Bud Powell - BeBop

    • Thursday - John Coltrane: Hard Bop, Modal Jazz, Free Jazz

    • Friday - Katie Ernst: Contemporary Jazz, Chicago Jazz


    • Monday - The Circle of fourths and the major scale

    • Tuesday - Chord Construction

    • Wednesday - Chord Scale Relationships

    • Thursday -  ii-V- I’s

    • Friday - Extended Harmonies


    • Work on instrument specific technical exercises

    • Explore improvisational techniques and approaches

    • Study common piano and guitar voicings

    • Learn about Latin rhythms, jazz drum techniques, and creating drum solos

    • Discuss the best ways to create a walking bass line


    • Melodic Rhythms for Improvisation - Kevin Brown

    • Motivic Development - Matt Peterson

    • Transcription - Artie Black

  • DAILY COMBO REHEARSALS - One hour of group rehearsal daily

    • Put new theory, history and instrumental principles to work in a group setting.

    • Learn the dynamics of playing in a group.

    • Get experience and coaching in improvisation

    • Prepare tunes for a final concert.


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Artie Black

Jazz Saxophone, Jazz History, Jazz Theory, Jazz Combo, Improvisation Masterclass

Artie Black is a saxophonist, composer, and educator based in Chicago. Originally from Butler, Pennsylvania, he was first inspired to pursue a career in music through lessons with Dr. Terry Steele, professor of saxophone at Slippery Rock University. Artie graduated with a degree in music education from Messiah College in 2010.  

After graduating from Messiah, he continued his studies at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana, earning a Master's degree in Jazz Studies in 2012. At Indiana, Artie studied saxophone with Tom Walsh and worked as an Associate Instructor with legendary jazz educator David Baker.

Artie moved to Chicago in 2012, where he quickly established himself as an important part of the creative music scene. He has appeared at the Hyde Park Jazz Festival and as a part of the Next Gen Jazz Series, and has played as a leader and sideman at The Green Mill, Andy's Jazz Club, Constellation, and dozens of other Chicago venues. Recent highlights include a weeklong tour and recording with his group Living Bridge, and a series of performances and workshops with Steve Coleman's Five Elements.

In addition to his passion for performance, Artie is fascinated by the learning and teaching process. He maintains a busy schedule of private saxophone instruction, and also joined the faculty of Wheaton College as an adjunct professor in Spring 2014. His goal as a teacher is to inspire his students to find joy through learning for themselves.

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Matt Peterson - Jazz Piano, Jazz History, Jazz Theory, Jazz Combo, Improvisation Masterclass

Originally from Seattle, WA, Matt Peterson is a jazz and classical pianist and composer.  He has composed for film, theatre, and Internet productions, and has performed as a soloist and in a variety of groups around the country.

Matt holds a Bachelor’s in Piano Performance and Composition from Wheaton College, where studied with Daniel Horn and Howard Whitaker. He also holds a Master’s in Jazz Studies from the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University.

In 2010, he was invited as the overall winner of the Ben Heppner Concerto Competition to perform Gershwin’s Concerto in F with the Wheaton College Symphony Orchestra.  In the summer of 2013, he worked as a pianist and percussionist with the Disneyland All-American College Band at the Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, CA. He was an invited performer at the 2013 Monterey Next Generation Jazz Festival with the Indiana University Quartet.   

Matt has studied jazz under Luke Gillespie, Nicole Mitchell, Bradley Williams, Steve Houghton, and David Baker and has had the privilege of sharing the stage with Curtis Fuller, Peter Erskine, Gordon Goodwin, Gregg Field, and Wycliffe Gordon. Matt performs in a number of jazz groups around the Chicago area.

He is passionate about music education and believes in the art of simultaneously encouraging students’ self-confidence and self-worth and challenging them enough to stretch their abilities and broaden their horizons.

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Lucas Gillan - Jazz Drums, Jazz History, Jazz Theory

Lucas Gillan has been teaching drum lessons in the Chicago area since 2007. He teaches jazz drum set as part of the adjunct faculty at Wheaton College and is the percussion instructor at Fenwick High School. With a broad musical background that includes everything from garage bands to jazz gigs to professional orchestras, Lucas has a unique perspective on what kind of experiences music can offer.

His teaching approach balances a solid grounding in music fundamentals with a creative spirit that is open to each student’s musical interests. As a beginner himself, Lucas was much more interested in writing his own music than in learning how to play the music of others, and he passes on that creative spirit to his students.

Lucas originally began making music in his hometown of Tucson, AZ, where he performed in church, punk clubs, and all-city jazz ensembles by the time he had graduated from middle school. His passion for music led him to the renowned jazz-studies program at Northern Illinois University. He graduated with a major in jazz studies and a minor in journalism in 2007.

Aside from being an inspired teacher, Lucas is an active performer in Chicago’s music scene. He leads his own jazz group, Lucas Gillan’s Many Blessings, which released its debut album, Arroyo, in September 2017. He plays drums in the nationally-known soul/pop group The Right Now, and performs as a freelancer with a wide variety of different musicians in Chicago's diverse music scene. He has performed at venues ranging from the Jazz Showcase to the United Center. In 2017, he graduated with a Master of Music in jazz studies at DePaul University, where he studied closely with world-renowned drummer Dana Hall.

When he's not busy with his studies or his careers as a performer or teacher, Lucas enjoys reading, exploring the outdoors, and experiencing the cultural riches of Chicago with his wife, Anna.


James Ross - Jazz Bass

James Ross is a bassists, composer and educator who has played extensively in the Chicagoland area for many years.  

He is a founding member of the band Hello Industry.  He has also performed with many other bands including The Right Now, The Astronomer, the Mike and Joe Band, PrayTell, Stereo Genius and Maggie Speaks.  

He has shared the stage with some of Chicago’s finest jazz musicians such as Rajiv Halim,  Andrew Lawrence, Jim Tashjian, Jon Deitemyer, Myles Hayes and many others.

He has been the music director at New Community Covenant church for 6 years and currently is the leader for the cover band Enough Said.  As a songwriter he has released an EP entitled “The Whole Sky”.

He holds a bachelors degree in Jazz Studies from the Chicago College of Performing Arts at Roosevelt University.  


Kevin Brown - Jazz History, Jazz Theory, Jazz Combo, Improvisation Masterclass

Canadian-born guitarist Kevin Brown is an experienced educator, performer, and composer in the Chicago area. He holds a B.M. in guitar performance from the Wheaton College Conservatory of Music and a M.M. in Jazz Composition from DePaul University.  
Some of his primary instructors have included Peter Ulrich, Willie Wiebe, Larry Roy, and Stephen Ramsdell with additional lessons and masterclasses with Scott Hesse, Mike Allemana, Steve Coleman, Rudresh Mahanthappa, Rez Abassi, John Patitucci, and many others.
He has performed with musicians such as Jimmy Greene, Benny Golson, Jon Irabagon, and Marquis Hill and has appeared in some of Chicago's top venues for jazz including the Green Mill and the Jazz Showcase. Kevin has performed at the Chicago Jazz Festival and the Iowa City Jazz Festival.
Kevin Brown is an adjunct faculty member at Trinity Christian College where he directs the jazz ensemble and teaches private lessons in guitar and composition.  In addition to teaching jazz guitar and combos at Bellas Artes he also serves as director for the Institute for Jazz Studies.

Enjoy a video about one of our student jazz combos...