School of Music

Jazz Studies

Jazz Festival


Click here to register your ensemble.

The 2016 WSU Jazz Festival is scheduled for
Wednesday, November 2nd, in the Kimbrough Music Building and Bryan Hall Theatre on the WSU Campus.


Our guest artist will be John Nastos.

Please join us for the 2016 Washington State University Jazz Festival on Wednesday, Nov. 2nd with special guest woodwind artist and composer John Nastos. Trophies will be awarded to the outstanding band of the morning and the outstanding band of the afternoon. Admission to the gala and afternoon concerts is free to all festival participants. Registration fees are only $175 per group. The festival will be limited to approximately eighteen big bands. Reserve your spot now!

Multi-instrumentalist John Nastos was born and raised in Portland, Oregon, where he found his love of music while exploring the vibrant local music scene.

In 2004, Nastos moved to New York City on a scholarship to study jazz at the acclaimed Manhattan School of Music. At MSM, John studied saxophone and composition with Dick Oatts (Thad Jones/Mel Lewis Orchrestra), Bob Mintzer (Yellowjackets), Steve Wilson (Chick Corea), and Mike Abene (WDR Big Band). In 2007, John completed the four-year degree program in just three years.

Since returning to Portland, John has performed with the who’s who of the Portland scene, including Mel Brown, the Bobby Torres Ensemble, the Portland Soul All-Stars, the Third Angle New Music Ensemble, Darrell Grant’s On the Territory, and the Damian Erskine Project. He has recorded with the Chuck Israels Orchestra, Intervision, Ben Darwish’s Commotion, the Jessie Marquez, and others.

Recently, Nastos’s composition, arranging, and compositional skills have been commissioned for performances and recordings by Damian Erskine, the Bobby Torres Ensemble, the Art Abrams Swing Machine, and Pink Martini (for performances with the San Francisco Symphony and other orchestras around the world). He has also recently spent time as part of Diane Schuur’s touring group, playing performances around the world.

To reserve a spot for your group, please contact Brian Ward at or click here to register your ensemble. For the last few years, unfortunately, we have had to turn away some groups because we simply didn't have room for all of the requests, so RESERVE YOUR SPOT SOON!


Check this page for updates.

For video highlights of previous festivals, see below.






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