On this page you’ll find details about each event and workshop that will be part of the 2021 online Ukulele Jazz Festival, which kicks off at 5:30 PM EDT on Friday, May 21st with a fun jazz jam and concludes on Saturday, May 22nd at 6 PM EDT with a faculty concert. To see the schedule-at-a-glance, please visit the Schedule page. Workshops will use standard GCEA tuning, but when workshops are marked Baritone friendly, it means that handouts will be provided for both GCEA and DGBE tuning and the instructor will demonstrate some of the concepts on baritone ukulele.

Registration includes: all events & workshops, all download materials and high quality practice backing tracks, access to replays of all events for one month after the Festival, and one ticket to the private live stream faculty concert. LEVEL: Intermediate and up.


5:30 PM EDT

Jazz jam

Join Diane Nalini & Adrian Cho for a lively jazz jam. We’ll kick things off in style as we play through simplified chords for most of the songs that will be covered during the Festival. A fun way to sing and play together while we familiarize ourselves with the pieces we’ll be diving into on Saturday. Baritone friendly.

6:15 PM EDT

Social hour & jazz trivia

Grab a drink and we’ll get together on Zoom to hangout and laugh together. Diane will share some of her favourite anecdotes from performances past and we’ll do a few fun rounds of jazz trivia. 


9:30 AM EDT

Welcome, warm up

Diane will help you start the day with a gentle warm up to get your body ready to sing and play.

10:00 AM EDT

Rhythm and Grooves, Timing and Tempos

In this interactive class focusing on fundamental jazz musicianship, Adrian will demonstrate the importance of listening, reacting, navigating musical forms, keeping solid time, and making great musical choices. You’ll hone these critically important skills and develop your jazz sensibility so that your approach to playing jazz tunes is both tasteful and tasty! Baritone friendly

11:15 AM EDT

Borrowing from the best: the sublime Barney Kessel

Using select recordings from Barney Kessel, one of jazz’s finest guitarists and accompanists, Diane will show you how to borrow great comping (accompanying) techniques and adapt them to the ukulele. Baritone friendly

12:30 PM EDT

Lunch ‘n learn: the subtle art of jazz phrasing

More than anything else, good phrasing is what sets apart the greatest jazz singers and instrumentalists. Sit back and enjoy your lunch while Diane takes you on a listening tour of some of her favourite jazz singers and analyzes what makes them so great.

1:30 PM EDT

Going solo: jazz arranging for solo ukulele

Join Neal Chin as he walks you through strategies for arranging jazz standards for solo ‘ukulele. We’ll talk about working with a limited range, timbres that compliment the instrument, and ways to bring together harmony, melody, and rhythm on 4 strings! Concepts are baritone friendly but examples will be in standard tuning (GCEA).

3:30 PM EDT

Twice the fun: jazz duets for two ukuleles

Sarah Maisel and Craig Chee will teach you their approach to developing a jazz arrangement for two ‘ukuleles, covering chord voicings and rhythmic patterns too. This will be a great way to work on your listening skills to complement another instrument. Sarah and Craig will do demonstrations using two standard tuned ukes AND one standard tuned uke with one baritone as well. Baritone friendly.

5:00 PM EDT

Wrap up

Diane will do a quick wrap up and provide reminders about resources and the faculty concert.

6:00 PM EDT

Faculty concert

Join Neal, Sarah, Craig, Adrian & Diane for a trans-continental, live streamed concert! Your ticket is included as part of the festival registration and you will receive a private stream link closer to the date. For those that aren’t registering for the festival but just wish to attend the concert, standalone tickets will be available for $12 CAD (~$9 USD).