A great teacher is one who realizes that he himself is also a student and whose
goal is not dictate the answers, but to stimulate his students creativity
enough so that they go out and find the answers themselves.

- Herbie Hancock       

Eric Zadan
Program Director

For more than three decades, Eric Zadan has been well known to the region as a pianist and jazz educator. Although known primarily as a jazz pianist who has led several groups and performed with some of the industry’s top names, Eric’s performance credits also include many national tours of Broadway Shows, extensive recording work, orchestral work, and performances in a wide variety of other commercial music idioms.

Partial List of Concert Performances

Mel Torme – Dayton Philharmonic SuperPops (Dayton Convention Center)
Henry Mancini – Dayton Philharmonic SuperPops (Dayton Convention Center)
Ken Peplowski – Dayton Philharmonic SuperPops (Schuster Center)
Steve Lippia – Dayton Philharmonic SuperPops (Schuster Center)
Hilary Kole – Club Concert (Gilly’s)
Mark O’Connor – Dayton Philharmonic SummerPops (Fraze Pavilion)
Marvin Hamlisch – Dayton Philharmonic SummerPops (Fraze Pavilion)
Monica Mancini – Springfield Symphony (Kuss Auditorium)
Moody Blues – (Ervin J. Nutter Center)
Tommy Tune – (Kuss Auditorium & Dayton Convention Center)
Roy Clark – Dayton Philharmonic SuperPops (Dayton Convention Center)
Several Bogie Busters Galas – Dayton Philharmonic (Dayton Convention Center & Victoria Theatre)
Prelude to a Kiss – Improvised Underscoring for a Human Race Theater Production (Loft Theater)
Tchaikovsky and Ellington’s Nutcracker Suite – Dayton Philharmonic (Dayton Convention Center)

Partial List of Performances as a Leader

Eric Zadan (Leading Quartets, Quintets and Big Bands) – Many appearances since 1979 (Gilly’s)
Zadan, Saxa, Freelove & Wolf – (Pacchia – Saturday Nights, October 9, 1999 thru July 29, 2000)
Eric Zadan Duo, Trio or Quartet – Countless events, public & private, from 1980 to the present

Partial List of Broadway Shows Performances

Evita – National Tour (Victoria Theater)
The Producers – National Tour starring Nathan Lane (Schuster Center)
White Christmas – National Tour (Schuster Center)
A Chorus Line – National Tour (Victoria Theater & Ervin J. Nutter Center)
Will Roger’s Follies starring Mac Davis – National Tour (Memorial Hall)
Crazy for You – National Tour (Victoria Theater)
Fiddler on the Roof – National Tour starring Topol (Victoria Theater)
Peter Pan – National Tour starring Cathy Rigby Cathy Rigby (Kuss Auditorium, Springfield)
South Pacific – Kenley Production starring Robert Goulet (Memorial Hall)
West Side Story – Human Race Theater Production (Victoria Theater)

Partial List of Presented Clinics/Performances

Wright State University
Sinclair Community College
University of Dayton
Northmont High School
Lebanon High School
Carroll High School
Chaminade-Julienne High School
Beavercreek High School
Meadowdale High School
Middletown High School



Eric began musical study in Poughkeepsie, New York in 1963 at the age of four. After relocating to Dayton, Ohio, he became a piano student of Audley Wasson, a preeminent pianist, teacher and former student of Swiss concert pianist Rudolph Ganz.

After performing twice as a concerto soloist with the Columbus Symphony Orchestra while in high school, Eric entered the College-Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati in 1977 on a classical piano scholarship. His studies there were guided by Richard Morris (piano), Frank Brown (jazz studies) and Frank Vincent (jazz piano).

Audley Wasson

Richard Morris

Frank Brown

Frank Vincent

While still a junior at CCM, Eric developed and presented a 5-week, summer jazz program for Dayton area high school students in 1979 and repeated the program in 1980. From 1977 until 1982, Eric led a jazz big band, Dynasty, which recorded a record in 1979 and performed weekly at Gilly’s in 1980 and 1981. Eric also began a second big band, Dynasty Jr., as an educational vehicle for high school and college students.

After becoming a full-time musician in 1980, Eric continued to expand the scope and depth of his musical and professional skills. In the early years, notable engagements included the Colony Club (house pianist) and Suttmiller’s (music director) in Dayton and the exclusive Innisbrook Resort (music director) in Tarpon Springs, Florida.

From 1985 until 1989, Eric owned and operated 5th Avenue, one of the largest and most ambitious night clubs in Dayton’s history. Located in the Oregon District, this 385-seat restaurant and showroom featured performances by many national artists.

Partial List of Artists who appeared at 5th Avenue

B.B. King
Blood, Sweat and Tears
Doc Severinson
Buddy Rich
Woody Herman
Lionel Hampton
Joe Williams
Carmen McRae
Betty Carter
Tommy Dorsey Orchestra
Steps Ahead
Lyle Mays
The 5th Dimension
The Association
The O'Jays
The Manhattans
Emo Phillips
Pete Barbutti
Harry Blackstone Jr.

5th Avenue
(from the stage)

5th Avenue
(facing the stage)

Since 1989, Eric Zadan has focused almost exclusively on jazz education. While primarily known for working with advanced jazz students, Eric has also enjoyed working with jazz students representing a wide variety of skill levels. Through the development and continued growth of the Jazz Arts Studio, Eric has been able to enjoy his lifelong love of jazz education on a daily basis, while still occasionally performing and recording.

Along the way, he has provided many gigs to his professional level students by booking jazz duos at the Racquet Club (2 years), jazz trios at Therapy Café (2½ years) and hundreds of other engagements at regional venues for jazz trios and quartets.

Hear and view performances by Eric Zadan.

Associate Professionals
Private Lessons & Clinics

James Smith

Jim Rupp

Vinny Marshall

James Smith

Three national broadcasts on National Public Radio. Performances at Nancy Jazz Pulsations Festival, (Nancy, France, 1992) and Newport Jazz Festival (Saratoga Springs site, 2004 w/ Sarah Morrow.)

Jazz performances with Joe Henderson, Woody Shaw, Joshua Redman, Terrell Stafford, Steve Wilson, Wynton Marsalis, Michael Feinstein, Billy Hart, Brad Goode, Hank Marr, Frank Foster, Norris Turney, Slide Hampton, Cal Collins, Emily Remler, John McNeil, Brian Lynch, Dave Carpenter, Bill Cunliffe, Tim Hagans, Kim Pensyl, Dave Liebman, Lynn Seaton, John Riley, John Von Ohlen, and many others.

Performances with national touring companies of the Broadway shows Zorba (starring Anthony Quinn) and 42nd Street (starring Jerry Orbach.)

Orchestrator for Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra. Commissioned for three orchestrations performed during the 2007 season at the Schuster Center, Dayton, OH.

Author of Jazz Guitar: Theory and Technique, Studio P/R/-Columbia Pictures Publications. (out of print), Bebop Riffs,  Reading Jazz Rhythms, The Guitarist's Guide to Technique,  Chord Thesaurus for Jazz Guitar,  and Selected Bach Fugues (arr. for three guitars & bass guitar)  from Jazz from the Conservatory Press.

Recordings with the Cincinnati Seven on the Klavier label (Sepulvada, CA) and CCM Faculty Jazztet on the SeaBreeze label.

B.A., University of New Mexico., M.M., Wisconsin Conservatory of Music.

Currently Professor at Central State University (Ohio) and on the faculty of the University of Cincinnati College- Conservatory of Music.

"There are not many men who have this kind of grace and taste on this instrument (guitar), the wonderful Jim Smith " --Billy Hart

Jim Rupp

Jim Rupp spent many years on the road playing in the great big bands of Woody Herman, Maynard Ferguson, and Glenn Miller. Jim also spent eight years with three-time Grammy Award-winning jazz singer Diane Schuur, touring worldwide. He continues to do freelance touring and recording with Diane Schuur, the Woody Herman Orchestra and plays at festivals worldwide. Over the years he has performed with other well-known artists and groups such as Ray Charles, Joe Lavano, Buddy DeFranco, Tony Bennett, the Smithsonian Masterworks Jazz Orchestra, the Columbus Symphony Orchestra, Hank Marr, Clark Terry, Joe Williams, Rosemary Clooney, and Natalie Cole. He appears on three Woody Herman CDs: "The Fiftieth Anniversary Tour" (nominated for a Grammy), "Legacy" and "Live in London".

He currently instructs jazz drumming at the Ohio State University. He has also given workshops at the Percussive Arts Society International Convention and the International Association of Jazz Educators Conference. He is a clinician for Noble and Cooley drums, Zildjian cymbals, Pro Mark drumsticks, and Remo drumheads.

Vinnie Marshall

Vinnie Marshall began playing bass in 1975 in Bethlehem Pennsylvania and studied with Philadelphia- based Guitarist Frank DiBussolo. He auditioned for the Air Force Band of the East in 1983 and spent 24 years traveling the world playing bass and entertaining troops and civilians alike. He has performed with Al Martino, Jerry Vale, Bobby Rydell, Bob Hope, Vic Damone, Pearl Bailey, The Miracles, and Jeff “Skunk “Baxter.  He retired from the Air Force in 2007 and has since been playing in the southwest Ohio region.