JWA Summer Jazz Camp: 13-17* January 2025


A residential summer school holiday workshop for young musicians ages 10 – 18. For those keen on jazz or wanting to try something new. Beginner to advanced. Jazz Camp 2025 will be in Katoomba (NSW) * Dates TBC.

booking will open in July

About Jazz Camp | Teaching Faculty | Evening Concerts | Program | Start/End times | Final Concert | Accommodation, Meals & Supervision| Testimonials | Register | Prices & Payment | Direct Deposit | Terms and Conditions | Getting There | Contacts and other workshops

Jazz Camp highlights include:

  • Learn jazz by playing in real ensembles.
  • Level-up improvising & ensemble skills
  • Meet like-minded peers – Become part of an amazing, vibrant creative community of keen young musicians
  • Benefit from the vast experience of our world-class faculty
  • Be inspired by nightly professional concerts 
  • Plenty of opportunities to play, to listen, and to learn.
  • Friendly atmosphere, inspirational peers & teachers.
  • GREAT food, and a beautiful location.
  • All this over 5 days/4nights is $1290 (AUD)
  • Payment in 4 interest-free instalments is available.

About jazz camp

Saul Richardson

Jazz Workshop Australia is proud to present Summer Jazz Camp, a five-day residential program for students ages 10 to 18 offering inspiration and learning through immersion and teaching in the wonderful world of jazz. It is for instrumentalists (including string players) and vocalists at all levels of experience from beginner to advanced to emerging professionals. For over 40 years this has been an institution among talented and motivated young jazz musicians in Australia.  Click here for photos of Jazz Camp 2015 or click here to see photos of more recent camps (on our Facebook page).  

Jazz Camp is based around building knowledge, skills, and agency in a happy, fun, friendly, encouraging community with EXCELLENT teachers. It also provides extension for keen and talented students, plus motivation, and inspiration.

“Jazz Camp has played a significant role in the lives of aspiring young musicians for over three decades. Described by many students as a major turning point in their playing, the Jazz Camp experience is about discovering the real joy in self-expression through music”. – John Morrison.

“This is a wonderful workshop for young musicians wishing to learn the art of Jazz Improvisation. I highly recommend it for all levels of learning. ???? One of the great programs in Australia”. – Bob Montgomery

Alumni of Jazz Camp include a who’s who of top Australian jazz artists. It was originally known as the Pan Pacific Jazz & Big Band Camp and, later the IAJE Australia Jazz Camp. For many years now it has been the JWA Jazz Camp and we’re proud to carry on the tradition of this annual gathering of young jazz musicians.

We suggest students have at least two to three years experience on their instrument (or grade 2 – 3 level?) to get the most out of Jazz Camp. The camp is for all instruments, including strings and voice. We recommend this camp to young musicians who are interested in jazz, because that is the focus of the week.

Students come to Jazz Camp from all over Australia and even overseas. Everyone spends time working both in groups of their own level and age-group, and some time in mixed groups. Accommodation is by age-group and gender. The camp is big enough that campers can be with their own peer groups within the camp but there are also enough combined activities to ensure no one is with exactly the same small group the whole time. It is a very welcoming and friendly environment. Older campers and staff are very supportive of younger students and each other.

Musicians are carefully placed in groups appropriate to their level of playing and improvising experience. 

Jazz Camp 2023 will be held in Katoomba, 90 minutes west of central Sydney. The venue is the beautiful and spacious Stay KCC convention site. It is in a picturesque village setting adjacent to the Blue Mountains National Park and the famous Scenic World attraction. It is also just minutes from the Katoomba town centre and accessible by public transport.

Teaching Faculty

We bring together a world-class team of expert tutors under the leadership of acclaimed jazz educators John Morrison and Dr Saul Richardson. John is a drummer, band leader, entertainer, teacher and director of the annual Big Band Blast festival in Port Macquarie. Saul Richardson is a guitarist, electric bassist, composer, principal of Jazz Workshop Australia, and chief conductor of the Sydney Youth Jazz Orchestras. Together the faculty bring decades of experience to create one of the world’s great Jazz Camp experiences. For any student serious about learning to play jazz, achieving new heights of excellence, and having a great time, then Jazz Camp is the place.

Vocalists work intensively with expert vocal coach Jacki Cooper through a specially designed program. More advanced vocalists have the opportunity to learn improvisation techniques and to work with a small jazz ensemble. All singers get the chance to sing with a big band.

The teaching faculty will be announced during the year. Recent teachers have included:

  • Jazz Camp director – Dr Saul Richardson
  • Jazz Camp musical director – John Morrison
  • sax & woodwind – Jack Stoneham, Anita Thomas, Peter Farrar, Gai Bryant
  • vocals – Jacki Cooper
  • Trumpet – Eric Dunan, Deven Rahman, Bob Montgomery
  • trombone – Des Cannings, Ragan Kang, Jeremy Borthwick
  • piano – Gavin Ahearn, Matt McMahon, Barney Wakeford, Matt Baker
  • bass – Natalie Risby, Nick Henderson
  • drums – John Morrison
  • guitar – Tony Barnard, Saul Richardson, Jeremy Sawkins, Sam Rollings, Libor Smoldas

Evening Concerts

An important feature of Jazz Camp are nightly concerts by leading professional groups. We aim to provide a varied program giving the students the chance to see, and meet, bands of different styles, small and large.

Evening concerts for JWA Jazz Camp have recently included: James Morrison quartet, Arcing Wires, Emma Pask, The Strides, Mambo Brown Trio, Bob Montgomery, Peter Farrar & Ellen Kirkwood’s Truffle Boils, Crawfish Po’ Boys, The Vampires, Sandy Evans Trio, Mucho Mambo, Simon Ashton’s RAMBO, and the Jazz Camp faculty band.

Concerts are exclusively for JWA Jazz Camp students and are not open to the public.

Camp Program

Jazz Camp is 5 days, 4 nights, including:

  • Eric Dunan
    Eric Dunan


  • Improvisation class
  • Big Band
  • Vocal workshop (for singers)
  • Drummers’ workshop (for drummers and percussionists)
  • Instrumental and rhythm section masterclass
  • Student jam session and concert
  • Daily concerts by professional groups
  • Student performance recordings

Start Time, Monday 1 January Check-In on day 1 is from 9:30 am until 10:30 am. Campers flying or driving from far away can arrive later if they need to, just let us know what time.

End Time, Friday 6 January, 12pm. The camp will end with a festival, students performing on multiple stages.

Final Concert

The camp ends with a festival-style concert, students playing in their various bands on different stages . The festival venue is on-site at KCC from 10am.

Nick Henderson bass
Nick Henderson, bass, 2019

Accommodation, Meals & Supervision

Accommodation for students is in cabins of 10 with shared facilities. Boys and girls are in separate cabins and students are generally grouped by age. Supervising staff are in rooms adjacent to student cabins and are onsite 24 hours. It is very important to us that all students at Jazz Camp are well supervised, well looked after, happy, and safe. Students will be supervised to ensure hand hygiene.

The counsellor to student ratio is about 1:16 with male and female staff. Including the teaching faculty the total staff-to-student ratio at Jazz Camp is better than 1:8.

The counselling staff all have current Working With Children certification. Most of the counselling staff are qualified first-aiders.

The catering staff at KCC are very experienced in providing meals for school camps. They can easily prepare meals to cater for any allergy or special dietary needs. If your child has special requirements you’ll need to tell us on the registration form, giving complete details, and contact the Stay KCC kitchen prior to the camp if requested. You’ll need to give details of special dietary needs at the time of registering.

The venue is Stay KCC 119 Cliff Drive, Katoomba, NSW, Australia
Phone (02) 4780 8222.


Here’s what other people have said about Jazz Camp and the Jazz Workshop:

“Jazz Camp is the hippest ******* thing happening in this country” – Eric Dunan.

“On 2-6th of January I attended this wonderful camp. It was one of the best experiences of my life. Being able to play alongside the bright, new generation of musicians. Thank to @jazzworkshopaustralia for giving me this wonderful opportunity” – Ted S., 2023 jazz camper.

“We just wanted to email you to say THANKS !! and a huge congratulations on running such a wonderful camp last week. We had both our sons there and they were suffering withdrawal symptoms the next day – always a good sign !! They truly loved it, with our eldest keen to come home and get into the Real Books big time.

We are so appreciative of all your hard work, for the great team of tutors etc that were there, and for creating an environment where creativity and musicality were so encouraged.

J. and B. Allan – parents of J. (guitar) and C. (bass).

“Congratulations on such a wonderful camp. As a parent I cannot believe that it runs so smoothly. What an unbelievable experience for our kids to have!… Read more

Ready to enrol? 

Prices & Payment options

  • Price: $1290
  • Payment in 4 interest-free instalments is available.
  • Bookings are only confirmed once full payment is received.
  • There will be a 3% surcharge on Paypal/credit card bookings.
  • NSW “Creative Kids” vouchers are accepted.
  • Bookings close on 10 December.

PayPal Logo

Jeremy Sawkins guitar
Jeremy Sawkins, guitar


Registration for jazz camp 2024 was open until 10 December. Now closed, sorry.

Please start a new form for each camper.

Bank details for direct deposit

BSB: 112 879 Account: 421 350 375. Jazz Workshop Australia Pty Ltd. You can only transfer to this account online. If you pay this way, be certain to include the student’s name in the transfer details (otherwise we have no way of knowing who the payment is from).

To pay in a bank branch you’ll need a different number: Click this link for in branch deposits.

Places are limited, so book early to guarantee your place.

Terms and Conditions

The terms and conditions are important and you accept these when you register. But,if you are like most people and are pressed for time, a couple of “highlights” include that we can’t give full refunds and the closer to the camp it gets, the less we can give back, so try not to book “just in case” and then pull out to go on a cruise at the last moment! Actually, just don’t go on a cruise at all. Also bad misbehaviour by a student may result in them being sent home at parents or own expense. Thankfully, that’s only had to happen once in the past 40 years, but we want everyone to know about it all the same. When you book you must accept all the terms & conditions. These are given on the booking form.

Getting There

The venue for Summer Jazz Camp 2023 is StayKCC convention venue at Katoomba. It is about 90 minutes drive from central Sydney. There is also easy access by train or airport shuttle. Main entry is via Cliff Drive, near Scenic World. There is a bus from Katoomba station.

Contacts and other workshops

For more information email info@JazzWorkshopAustralia.com.au

As well as Summer Jazz Camp we ofer other great activities such as Winter Jazz Camp in July or join a jazz band at JWA in St Leonards. Have a look at the rest of this website for details of other holiday activities or ensemble opportunities. At JWA, Jazz Camp is really on every day of the year! It really is Sydney’s best place for learning jazz.