Date of Award

Fall 12-11-2021

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Music


School of Music

First Advisor

Dr. Samantha Inman

Second Advisor

Dr. Stephen Lias

Third Advisor

Dr. J. D. Salas

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Court Carney


This thesis surveys various approaches to improvisation from four jazz musicians through transcription and analysis and applies the devices learned to teach improvisation in the college classroom. The opening chapters transcribe and analyze four jazz solos: Bill Evans’ “Someday My Prince Will Come,” Oscar Peterson’s “On Green Dolphin Street,” Benny Green’s “Blue Monk,” and George Coleman’s “Maiden Voyage.” Based on this analysis, the final chapter develops basic exercises for in-class instruction in improvisation on the following topics: blues form and blue notes, chord arpeggios, triadic approach, triplet arpeggio, melodic line, octave displacement, chromatic approach, encircling tones, and motivic development. Reducing the challenges to teaching jazz improvisation in the college classroom, these exercises encourage experimentation and enable students to develop their own improvisation.

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Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Available for download on Tuesday, December 01, 2026



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