Frequently Asked Questions
Is the SMV Vocal Jazz Camp for me?
The camp, which has been in existence since 2004, prides itself on its ability to cater to singers with ANY amount of experience, from first-time jazz singers to professional singers. The camp participants are typically comprised of high school and college students, vocal educators and professional vocalists – we have had participants as young as 10 and as old as 83. We strongly believe that every person attending the camp can learn from the experience of ANY other participant at the camp, regardless of age.
I have not had much experience with jazz, or am a Classically-trained singer or educator. Will I fit in at the camp?
Yes, absolutely! Again, we are a very inclusive camp – our intention is to enable participants to GROW from whatever experience level. We have heard from participants about HOW SCARED they are to attend the camp… and almost every person would go on record to say that their fear DISSOLVED within the first day at the camp!
What is the difference between this camp and the Jazz Harmony Retreat?
The Jazz Harmony Retreat is a separate camp at our college also run by Dr. Jeremy Fox, specifically designed for educators, adults, and college music majors to learn more about jazz from the inside out. Participants learn less about singing, but more about jazz harmony, jazz accompanying, and learn to write their own vocal jazz chart by the end of the week! The Jazz Harmony Retreat is intended to take place before the SMV Vocal Jazz Camp, so that educators might be able to attend two different camps and experience two sides of learning about jazz! For more info, head to www.JazzHarmonyRetreat.com. Please note, THREE GRADUATE CREDITS ARE AVAILABLE (through SW Missouri State) FOR EACH OF THESE CAMPS, at the additional cost of $75 per credit!
I am the parent of child under the age of 18. Can you tell me a bit about camp supervision?
At each camp, we have at least a 6:1 ratio of faculty to campers. Among the staff will be two qualified counselors there for your children’s needs and protection during the entirety of the camp. They will be available to your child 24 hours a day and will be housed in the dorm buildings with your child. In addition, your child will have the Dr. Jeremy Fox’s cell number, to use at any time in case of emergency. All camp participants including teachers, professional singers, and college and high school students stay in the same dorm hall. The participants will typically stay in dorm suites containing three to four similar-aged participants, with a common living area on each floor. No suite will have more than one gender at any time. Finally, do know that the camp schedule is extremely full and free time is minimal. Attendance is required for all activities, and is closely monitored.
At what time does the camp begin?
We are excited to extend the Creston camp this year, beginning with registration at 5:30 pm on Sunday evening, with the opening session following that evening at 6:15 PM. Registration for the Winnipeg camp begins at Noon on Monday, with the opening session at 1 PM.
At what time does the camp conclude?
Each camp concludes with a final culminating concert on the final evening at 7:00 PM (open to the public). After the concert, there is an afterglow get-together at a local restaurant – this is of course optional, but many/most campers participate.
What is the daily schedule like?
The schedule on most normal days is quite full – typically from 8:30am to 10pm daily. We hope and expect all campers to be at all activities, however if you cannot attend all sessions/days, we will make exceptions in special cases for those who ask prior to the camp.
Are there accommodations available?
At the Iowa camp, we provide the option of air-conditioned dorm rooms on the campus of Southwestern Community College. These are typically private bedrooms, grouped in suites of 2-4 bedrooms around a common kitchen and bathroom, and are available for the VERY reasonable cost of $15 per night. A simple dorm request indicated on the registration form will suffice – more information regarding the dorms will be sent by early June.
At any other camp location, for those wishing to reduce costs further, the camp coordinator can assist by searching for appropriate billeting. It is not always possible, but every effort will be made.
What about meals at the camp?
Meals at each camp are available at nearby restaurants, many of which are within walking distance. At the Iowa camp, most participants bring/purchase perishable and non-perishable meals that can be stored in participants’ personal dorm full-sized refrigerators/freezers, and can be microwaved or cooked in participants’ microwaves and stoves. At all camps, many participants bring a sack lunch and eat at the camp site. Ride-shares to local fast food establishments will be provided and/or set-up if needed.
Will I need a car at the camp?
Obviously, an automobile can make things logistically easier. However, it is certainly not necessary. The camp staff will make every effort to pair up those needing basic transportation (for instance to/from meals) with other participants or faculty members who can provide rides.
How can I get to and from the camp?
Shuttles can be provided to/from airports for a nominal cost of $25 per ride, or $50 round-trip. Airports to fly into are:
• For the Iowa SMV camp: Des Moines (65 miles) or Omaha (80 miles)
• For the Winnipeg SMV camp: Winnipeg Airport
• Amtrak or Greyhound may also be an option for the U.S. camps. In particular, there is an Amtrak station located in Creston, Iowa – just one mile from the camp location – and we can pick you up at this Creston Amtrak station at no cost!
IF FLYING TO THE CRESTON CAMP, PLEASE PLAN TO ARRIVE BY PLANE TO OMAHA or DES MOINES airport NO LATER THAN 3PM IF POSSIBLE!
When should I make travel/hotel/car reservations?
Before booking any air travel, or any non-refundable hotels/cars, be sure to contact the camp director to be certain the camp you are planning to attend is in fact viable.
Why should I register early?
There is a financial benefit for registering early – a $45 Early-Bird discount for registrants before May 1st. For the Creston camp, we offer a $70 Nest of Early-Birds discount for five or more from the same school registered before May 1st (or $45 for five or more from the same school if any Nest’er registering after May 1st). Please note, this cannot be used in conjunction with any other offers from the SMV Vocal Jazz Camps.
In addition, late registrants run the risk of not having enough time to prepare the Group music – and more importantly the three short Solo songs. You will have a much more rewarding experience at the camp if you have the chance to prepare this music well ahead of time.
Why does this camp cost what it costs?
We like our campers to receive a lot of individual attention, so we have at least 10 staff/faculty members at each camp. The by-product of this however, is that our tuition fees are critical to helping us to pay our staff and offset expenses.
Are there scholarships available?
Limited scholarship money is available beyond the Early-Bird discounts (see above). We do offer scholarships at our SMV Real Group Festival each spring, at the BANFF Rocky Mountain Music Festival, and at the Brandon Jazz Festival, as well as other very select vocal festivals across North America. If you would like to be considered for additional scholarship money to attend the camp, please fill out this form. (The information you provide will go directly to our upper management staff, and will not be shared with anyone further.)
Are there other discounts I can qualify for?
If you live near a camp area and have space to house out-of-town campers the week of the camp, you will receive $50 off your camp tuition for each camper you can house. Plus, you will make new friends!
Something came up and I can't make the camp. Can I get my deposit back?
Your deposit is what holds your spot at the camp, and allows us to plan effectively for the camp. There are many decisions made well in advance of your being with us that took place based on your registration. Camp deposits (minus any electronic processing fees) will be refundable up to 45 days prior to each camp.
Enrollment is VERY LIMITED at each camp, on a first-come, first-served basis!
For further questions, email camp coordinator Jeremy Fox