Next week 80 young jazz musicians from all over Australia will converge on Naamaroo Conference Center, nestled in the picturesque bushland of the Lane Cove National Park. The usual tranquility will be replaced by the swinging sounds of a new generation of jazz talent. For over three decades the JWA Jazz Camp, formerly the IAJE Australia Jazz Camp, and even before that the Pan Pacific Big Band Camp, has been a vital incubator for a significant contingent of successful Australian jazz musicians, both established and up-and-coming.
Some Jazz Camp alumni include, and this is almost just a random sample:
- Matt Baker, John Foreman, Cathy Harley, Jackson Harrison, Matt McMahon, Emma Stephenson, Tate Sheridan, Nick Southcott, Harry Sutherland (piano)
- David Theak, Andrew Brooks, Richard Maegraith, Mark Taylor, Jeremy Rose, Evan Harris, Jason Cooney, Richard Savery, Antita Thomas, Shaan Singh (saxes & woodwind)
- David Goodman, Loz Benson, Jamie Castrisos, Simon Ert, Mike Quigley, Al Hicks, Alex Hirlian, Oli Nelson (drums)
- Rod Mayhew, Simon Ferenci, Ray Cassar, Nick Garbett, Donna Daly, Heather Prowse (trumpet)
- Adrian Mears, Rod Herbert, Luke Davis, Donna Daly, Daniel “Big Duck” Moore, Tim Rowland (trombone)
- Maddy Young, Adrian Petlevanny, Saul Richardson, Nick Ujhazy, Daniel Willington, Will Morrison, Hilary Geddes, Alex Hone (guitar)
- Mark Harris, Nick Henderson, Harry Morrison, Laura Small (bass)
- Wallace Gollan, Natasha Weatherill, Liam Burrows, Lauren Benson, Nic Jeffries (singers)
Teachers at Jazz Camp have included John Morrison, James Morrison, Bobby Gebert, Kim Richmond, Mark Taylor, Anita Thomas, Tony Barnard, Steve Brien, Matt McMahon, Nick Southcott, Matt Baker, Bob Montgomery, Libor Smoldas, Jacki Cooper, Darren Percival, Andrew Firth, David Theak, Gai Bryant, Remco Keijzer, Jeremy Borthwick, Ben Jones, Saul Richardson, Dave Steinmeyer, Blaine Whittaker,..
It is an important annual event for the Sydney jazz community and is still going strong after well over thirty years. It is all happening again next week 19-23 January. A whole new generation of young musicians will spend a week immersed in and finding inspiration in the amazing, creative world of jazz. Some lucky, exceptional Jazz Camp students will also be invited to form a big band that will tour the USA and Barbados in 2016.
Bookings for this year’s JWA Jazz Camp have closed, but it will all happen again next year in early January. Keep an eye on this website. Bookings for January 2016 will open in April-May.
Rare video of Maddy Young, a marvelously talented Jazz Camper of the late 1980s see here in duet with Tony Barnard who taught her guitar at the camp: