Theory, Vocal, Instrumental, Orchestra, Jazz

The Music program at CBC gives you the opportunity to explore music, whether it be as a passion or as a curiosity. Courses will give you the foundation for a future degree as a professional musician, composer or K-12 teacher and fulfill humanities electives requirements for students seeking another path. Through studies in music, you will:

  • Learn the foundational skills necessary to go onto a four-year degree in music.
  • Develop as a professional artist.
  • Satisfy the humanities requirement for an AA.
  • Learn to apply and appreciate music in its many forms.

Music offerings at CBC meet the requirements for the first two years of Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degrees in music at most four-year institutions, enhance the musical knowledge and performance ability of students wishing to enter the professional field with an Associate in Arts degree, and provide general leisure activity.

CBC Music Students in Action

Check out the 2019 recording of the CBC Jazz Ensemble performing "Lullaby of Broadway", featuring Meg Powers.

Performance Groups

You can gain experience on stage or behind the scenes performing with groups or learning the technical aspects of equipment management or running sound are available, contact a director to see where you can start being involved.

There are many performance opportunities at local venues, at quarterly concerts, and with nationally known artists during Jazz Unlimited.  

Visit the CBC Arts Center website for up-to-date concert information.

A non-auditioned concert band, directed by Dr.%20Collin%20Wilson%2C that meets one evening a week and culminates with an end of the quarter concert. Other performance opportunities may be scheduled during Winter and Summer. This group is open to students and community members.

image of choir with instructor

A vocal ensemble of 24 singers that meets one evening a week and culminates with an end of the quarter concert. Its focus is mainly advanced choral literature. This group is an auditioned ensemble, which includes the members of FreeForm.

image of vocal jazz group FreeForm

FreeForm is the premier vocal jazz ensemble. This group focuses on the traditional as well as contemporary advances in the jazz idiom, encompassing swing, ballad, bebop, fusion, funk and even elements of free jazz. This group is an auditioned ensemble.

image of students performing with jazz band

The jazz ensemble, directed by Dr.%20Collin%20Wilson, maintains an active performing, touring and recording schedule. It is an auditioned traditional jazz band.

Audition Info

The orchestra, directed by Bruce%20Walker, is a non-auditioned community orchestra. Its primary focus is to provide an opportunity for student and community string musicians at or around Columbia Basin College to hone their craft of playing inside an orchestral ensemble. In addition, we have expanded the ensemble to include a chamber music program that adds instructional coaching for smaller ensembles within the orchestra.
Small instrumental ensembles meeting once a week with a focus on jazz improvisation.

Scholarships and Talent Grants

We offer up to five scholarships a year that range from $1,000 to $4,500 per person towards tuition and fees for one year (three continuous quarters). Two scholarships are dedicated for students with the intent of majoring in music with an emphasis in band instruments. Two to three scholarships are dedicated for students with the intent of majoring in music with an emphasis in choral, vocal, and/or piano accompanying.

Any currently enrolled or potential student is eligible to apply. Most scholarships are for full-time students (12 or more credits) maintaining a minimum grade point average of 2.5, but a few may be awarded to part-time students. Be sure to complete the CBC Admissions Application.

  • Complete the CBC Foundation Scholarship application.
  • Audition with the appropriate Music Department faculty.
  • Declared intent to major in music and participation in the appropriate CBC Music Program ensemble.

We offer two scholarships towards tuition and fees for one year (three continuous quarters) and are dedicated for students with the intent of majoring in music with an emphasis in band instruments.

We offer two to three scholarships towards tuition and fees for one year (three continuous quarters) and are dedicated for students with the intent of majoring in music with an emphasis in choral/vocal and/or piano accompanying.

Do you sing, play an instrument or have sound engineering skills? There may be openings in the various groups that could use your skills which offers a scholarship called a ‘talent grant’. Talent grant information can be obtained from the music department faculty.

Jazz Unlimited Festival

Hosted by the Columbia Basin College Music Program since 1972, Jazz Unlimited is an annual festival and competition for middle school, junior high school and high school concert bands, jazz bands, concert choirs and jazz choirs around the Northwest. The festival includes clinics, special guests and concerts.

This festival offers invaluable education opportunities to learn and perform with top adjudicators and nationally known musicians. Visit the CBC Arts Center website for more information.

Jazz Ensemble Auditions

All students interested in auditioning for the jazz ensemble should come to rehearsal on the first day of fall quarter. We will meet, talk about the plans for the year and do a little sight reading – bring you instruments! We will schedule individual auditions for the rest of the week.

Any CBC student who plays a standard jazz ensemble instrument may audition.

Audition Requirements:

Audition materials will be available one week prior to the first day of fall quarter. Contact Collin Wilson to obtain the materials

  1. The provided prepared excerpt for your instrument.
  2. A prepared piece you may choose – this could be a transcription or tune you’ve learned.
  3. Sight Reading
  4. OPTIONAL: Improvisation on a tune of your choice. If you are new to improvising that’s okay! Try a Bb Blues. (Some chairs require improvisation, please email Dr. Wilson with any questions).
  1. Demonstration of time or comping in the following styles: 
    - Slow/med/up tempo swing 
    - Bossa 
    - Samba 
    - Afro Cuban 
    - Funk 
    - Jazz Waltz
  2. Sight Reading
  3. Provided Prepared Excerpt 
  4. Improvisation on a tune of your choice – required for all rhythm section chairs.

Careers in Music

Courses taught in Music can serve as a foundation for many degrees and/or careers, a few options are listed below. Speak with the music instructors to learn more on how you can start.

  • Music Industry/Performance Work

    Recording artist, instrumentalist, music ministry and record producer.

  • Music Composition

    Composer, conductor, accompanist and music copyist.

  • Music Studies

    Music historian, music therapist, ethnomusicologist and music librarian.

  • Education

    Elementary teacher, high school teacher, private instructor and college professor.

Full-Time Faculty

Courses Taught: Music Appreciation, Music Theory and Orchestra

Contact me! 

Courses Taught: Music Appreciation, Music Theory, Band and Jazz Band

 Contact me!

Adjunct Faculty

Choral Director

Courses Taught: Class Piano, Concert Choir, Chamber Choir and FreeForm

Contact me!


image of instructor with piano students