Educational Activities

Educational Activities



Don Braden is a dedicated, experienced, and passionate educator. His vast experience with jazz masters Betty Carter, Wynton Marsalis, Tony Williams, Freddie Hubbard, Tom Harrell, Roy Haynes, and many others have helped him develop a thorough understanding of all aspects of jazz.



For over 20 years, he has served as Music Director the Litchfield Jazz Camp, and has been MD for the Texas Jazz & Blues Camp for 5 years. He is also part of the innovative New York Comes to Groningen program at the Prins Claus Conservatoire in Groningen, the Netherlands.


For many years he worked as an instructor for the Jamey Aebersold Summer Jazz Workshops and for William Paterson University, and he ran programs for NJPAC’s Wells Fargo Jazz For Teens and Montclair State University. He recently completed a three-year appointment as Interim Conductor of the Harvard Monday Jazz Band, and currently runs the Harvard Jazz Combo Initiative.


With his extensive high-level Jazz experience, positive energy, excitement, and musicality, Braden is an outstanding guest soloist for any kind of ensemble.  He’s great with young people and pros alike.  He has over 15 big band charts at various levels available, as well as 4 pieces for full symphonic orchestra (with Jazz quartet.)

Braden has done masterclasses, residencies, and guest soloist appearances at educational institutions all over the U.S. and Europe, including Harvard University, Princeton University, Spellman College, Morehouse University, Clark Atlanta University, University of Denver, University of Louisville, University of Southern Florida, Miami-Dade Community College, Portland State University, Duke University, the Rotterdam Conservatory, the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music, the New School for Social Research, the Manhattan School of Music, Williams College, and others, plus a variety of high, middle and elementary schools.

Don Braden’s charts include a number of solid college/pro level big band charts, as well as a host of medium and small ensemble arrangements, many of which can be heard on his CDs. He also has four original works (so far) for full symphonic orchestra with jazz ensemble, which includes a premiere of “Vox Populi Mundi” (co-composed with Dutch bassist Joris Teepe) in the Netherlands in November 2006 for Queen Beatrix (Queen at the time, currently Princess).