Send a kid to Jazz Combo School

While we have had to cancel Milestones Summer Jazz 2019, we have managed to put together a kind of “jazz camp lite” that will give 30+ kids the opportunity to play in a jazz combo with one of the Valley’s top jazz educators at “jazz combo school!”

However, when we cancelled camp, we also lost our scholarship sponsor. Though jazz combo school is much more affordable, just $125, there are still a number of kids whose families cannot comfortably come up with that amount.

That is where we hope you can help! Please consider making this one-time donation to Milestones Youth Jazz that will go directly to jazz combo schooL tuition for kids who can’t afford it.

JUST $125 will give a kid 10 hours of jazz instruction! And if that’s a bit much, any amount you donate will be most appreciated! Thank you for your help!

Jazz Combo School to be Offered as Alternative to Summer Jazz Camp

Though Milestones Summer Jazz had to be cancelled due to a series of unfortunate circumstances, we are pleased to announce that we will be offering an alternative! Summer Jazz Combo School will in two sessions: June 17-21 and June 24-28. Participants will play in small group jazz ensembles that meet for two hours per day all week long.

In these five two hour sessions with a jazz pro you will get experience playing in a small group jazz ensemble with others who are playing at your level.

Read more about it and sign up on the Milestones website.

When Art Meets Jazz 3

We don’t know what will happen WHEN ART MEETS JAZZ 3 on Saturday, May 18 at the Fresno Art Museum. Until the event unfolds, we can only guess. That’s the beauty of art (and music) that is based on improvisation.

WHEN ART MEETS JAZZ will be held on Saturday, May 18 from 2 to 8 pm in the beautiful Sculpture Garden of the Fresno Art Museum in Fresno. The event is not the typical art show or jazz concert. Rather than displaying their work while a jazz trio plays softly in the background and the audience sips chardonnay and nibbles on cheese, numerous Valley artists will begin the event with a blank canvas – literally. As the show begins, they will draw their inspiration from the improvised music of many of the Valley’s best jazz musicians and the atmosphere of the event itself and create work on the spot.

The first hours of the event will feature the Milestones Youth Jazz Workshop ensembles – students from around the Valley who have distinguished themselves at young ages and received abundant recognition for their efforts.

Later in the afternoon, a collection of the Valleys best jazz pros will take to the stage, including ensembles featuring Benjamin Boone, David Aus, and Richard Giddens.

Accompanying the musicians will be notable local artists who will follow no rules except to be inspired by the sights, sounds and rhythm of the event. The artists will include Rob Weibel, Anne Scheid, Kevin Stewart-Magee, Caleb Henderson, Julia Wolli-Scott, Ron Wiggington, and Evany Zirul. Guests will have the opportunity to purchase the artwork created during the event.

Of note, artist Rob Weibel will be demonstrating his amazing pyrotechnic art skills as he creates dramatic art pieces with gunpowder.

The event will also include no-host cocktails and food vendors.

Proceeds from the event benefit the Milestones Youth Jazz Workshop, and the Fresno Art Museum.

Tickets in advance: $25 | after May 11, 2019: $30 | children 10 and under: free.

Tickets will be available later this month at the Fresno Art Museum, 2233 N First Street, 559.441.4221 or at

The event is a production of the Fresno Art Museum, JazzFresno’s Milestones Youth Jazz Workshop, and Art Happenz.

Event Details

Milestones Summer Jazz 2019

Milestones Summer Jazz Camp will take place on Monday, June 17 through Friday, June 21 at Glacier Point Middle School in Fresno, CA. The camp is for jazz musicians and aspiring jazz musicians alike, from those just entering middle school to college students 20 years and younger.

We have assembled a faculty of outstanding jazz educators and musicians that reads like a who’s who in jazz. The faculty will lead small group ensembles and provide master classes and instruction in jazz theory and improvisation for kids playing at every level.

Visit the Milestones Youth Jazz Workshop website to learn more.

Intro to Jazz Class Now Offered

Milestones Youth Jazz is pleased to offer a new class that will serve as a “first step” for kids who might be considering getting into jazz. The Intro to Jazz group is for those who want to learn about jazz improvisation while playing different types of jazz in a group setting. It is for students of all ages, from sixth grade through high school.

The group meets Tuesdays from 4:30 – 6:30 pm at the Milestones Facility at 90 E. Escalon Ave, Ste 115 in Fresno.

You can attend the first session at no charge, so there is really no reason not to come and check it out!


It’s the perfect group if you can check at least one of the following boxes:

  • I have at least one year of experience on my instrument and I am ready to learn about jazz improvisation.
  • I would like to get some jazz experience before joining my middle or high school jazz band.
  • I’m already in my middle or high school jazz band, but I’m not that confident when it’s my turn to play a solo.
  • I’m just wondering what this jazz thing is all about, and I would like to find out in a more low-key setting without all the pressures of a formal performance.

“Introduction to Jazz” is a great way to build confidence, learn more about jazz in general, and get jazz improvisation experience.

All instruments are welcome. For more information contact the Milestones project director

Former Students Weigh in on Milestones

Former students share how Milestones affected their development as musicians and as people.

More from Evan: I have been part of Milestones Youth Jazz Workshop since its inception. My instructors not only made sure we understood pieces we were playing from a musical aspect, but also a historical aspect. I was inspired to listen more and think harder about music.

More from Andrew: The Milestones program also taught me an important lesson in giving back. The teachers in the program pass down their years of experience and education, and this is a great gift to the Central Valley. They have truly inspired me to give back to the community in any way I can.

More from McKenna: Being a part of Milestones gave me the opportunity to play with amazing musicians who were much better than me, which is one of the best experiences a young musician can have. It put me on the path to be able to attend a strong undergraduate jazz program and feel prepared for the workload expected. I cannot recommend Milestones enough to anyone looking to improve their skills and knowledge of the music–there’s no way you won’t get better.

More from Jacob: Milestones helped me learn what it was like to make music with people I had never met before. Talented instructors showed me how music was a way to communicate, and that listening to and considering others is of critical importance.

More from Logan: I had an incredible time with the Milestones jazz program when I was in high school. I was able to study and work with the best players and educators in Fresno and beyond thanks to this wonderful program.