Gathering Orchestra Auditions

The Carr Center is currently accepting applications for the next class of The Gathering Orchestra, a two-year fellowship program. 

The orchestra will be comprised of 4 seasoned jazz veterans and 14 – 18 young (ages 18-30) professional Fellows. Once selected via auditions and invitations, Fellows will continue in the program for up to 2 years. Each year, they will participate in four to five one-week residencies based at the Carr Center’s Performance Studio in Detroit’s Cultural Center. Over the course of each of these weeks, they will participate in jam sessions, community engagement and education programs, professional development workshops, work with professionals at the top of the industry, rehearse and perform the standards, large and small ensemble classics, and present new music. Fellows will be encouraged to use The Gathering as a testing ground for their own compositions and may have opportunities to lead the ensemble. Each residency period will culminate in public performance(s). 

Fellows of The Gathering Orchestra will be required and must commit to participating in all planned and scheduled activities. All Fellows will receive an annual Fellowship stipend of $4,000.00 to cover expenses.

2023 Residency Periods:

  • March 20 – 26, 2023May 8 – 13, 2023
  • September 18 – 24, 2023
  • November 2023 TBA

Prospective Gathering members must submit an audition performance via mp4. 



All Jazz Candidates should prepare a video performing the following selections outlined in the application: unaccompanied, displaying good time, swing/groove ability, technical facility, soulfulness, sound, and tone. All three selections must be memorized and can be found in the New Standards 101 Lead Sheets by Women Composers, Terri Lyne Carrington—Berklee Press.  Here are the lead sheets you will need for your audition.

  • Searchin’ – Jazzmeia Horn

Play the melody once, improvise two choruses and the melody out once (tempo ♩ quarter note = 256)

  • Blue Nile – Alice Coltrane

Play the melody once, improvise one chorus (tempo ♩ quarter note = 112)

  • Samsara (For Wayne) – Terri Lyne Carrington

Play the melody once, improvise one chorus (tempo ♩ quarter note = 96)

All candidates are required to perform a transcription for their respective instrument.

Freddie Hubbard’s solo on You and The Night and The Music (CD/Album: Inter Play – Bill Evans)

Oliver Nelson’s solo on Stolen Moments (CD/Album: Blues and the Abstract Truth – Oliver Nelson)

Curtis Fuller’s solo on Blue Train (CD/Album: Blue Train – John Coltrane)

Wynton Kelly’s solo on Freddie the Freeloader (CD/Album: Kind of Blue – Miles Davis)

Grant Green’s solo on Grant’s Tune (CD/Album: Solid – Grant Green)

Paul Chambers’ solo on Softly As In A Morning Sunrise (CD/Album: Paul Chambers Quintet – Paul Chambers)


Please see below the audition instructions for the drummers:

Max Roach’s solo on Lonesome Lover (CD/Album: It’s Time – Max Roach)

Note: Drummers will need to demonstrate the following various grooves:

  • Slow Swing
  • Medium Swing
  • Fast Swing
  • Funk
  • Bossa Nova
  • Afro Cuban 6/8
  • Samba
  • Mambo
  • Rhumba

Recordings are due by 11:59 p.m. February 24, 2023.

All candidates selected for live auditions will be required to sight-read.

Selected candidates will be invited to a live audition. Live invitational audition will be held, Monday, March 20, 2023 at 6:30 p.m. at the Carr Center’s Performance Studio, 15. E. Kirby, Detroit, MI 48202.

For additional information, send your questions to