Welcome to the University of Idaho Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival.
The Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival is the world's largest educational jazz festival with nearly 5,000 student participants each year.
The festival offers a variety of student opportunities including adjudicated performances, performance clinics, artist workshops, afternoon Young Artists concerts and evening concerts featuring some of today’s finest jazz musicians.
Each student performance will receive both a numeric score and recorded verbal comments from our adjudicator-educators. The verbal feedback is intended to provide real-time documentation, while the numeric score is to provide representation of the quality of each category of performance (see the scoring section of this website for details). Every soloist and ensemble will receive this feedback from two adjudicators.
Following each performance, student groups will receive a clinic from one or two of our fine adjudicators. Performances and clinics will be as follows:
17-minute performance (maximum)
17-minute performance clinic, from one of our adjudicators
Collegiate large ensemble
27-minute performance maximum
27-minute performance clinic, one adjudicator
12-minute performance (maximum)
5-minute performance clinic, on stage, two clinicians
Please note one change from previous years. All soloists and combos will be given the opportunity to perform for 12 minutes. After 12 minutes, each soloist/combo will receive a performance clinic on stage. Combos and soloists will not be permitted to play beyond 12 minutes.
Performance time for all ensembles, combos and soloists starts the moment they step onto the stage. Please allow a few moments for microphone adjustments as necessary.
Each large ensemble winner will be announced at the afternoon Young Artist’s Winners Concert in the dome, and will compete for the sweepstakes prize at this concert. Outstanding soloists selected to perform at the evening concert featuring world-class jazz musicians will also be announced at this time.
Large ensembles may play one selection (8 minutes maximum) for the sweepstakes competition. Adjudicators will select the best overall group for the sweepstakes prize. The sweepstakes winner will receive our yearly rotating trophy, as well as one free entry into the 2018 Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival.
The festival offers over 100 workshops that feature world-renown artists and educators. Several University of Idaho faculty members have offered their expertise to also provide several interdisciplinary workshops. Some workshops provide handouts and materials for participants. Several of the workshops allow students to come on stage to work with the presenter.
Student participants may attend the Festival workshops and the Young Artists afternoon concerts for free. There is no charge to listen to the other performances in the daytime portion of the Festival. Read a detailed listing of artist and educational workshops.
Evening concerts feature professional musicians, from young artists to mature masters. Nearly every artist offers a workshop at the Festival, as well as remarkable performances during the four evenings of the Festival. Attendees may expect to experience a party format, as well as artists performing with their own groups and sidemen.
The Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival’s Jazz in the Schools outreach program began in 1997 Artist educators visit private and public schools in the region. Experiential educational presentations are offered during the week of the festival. The artist educators see over 7000 students each year.