Music Education Hubs shortlisted for the Will Michael Jazz Education Award were announced at the Music Mark Annual Conference in Warwickshire on Friday 23 November.
• Camden Music Hub –recognised for their outstanding commitment to gender diversity in jazz and engaging in cross-genre collaboration.
• Durham Music Service – recognised for their focus on developing their workforce and developing jazz ensemble provision for primary school children.
• Devon Music Service – for continued excellence of their ensemble provision and to celebrate their retiring Head of Service, Ken Parr, who’s been the lynchpin in jazz provision in the area for decades.
• Greater Manchester Hub – for ensuring that their provision meets the needs of the varied communities in the 9 Greater Manchester music services. Trafford’s HMS Syncopation project for primary schools was singled out for its innovation.
• Oxfordshire Music Service – for continuing to build on existing excellent ensemble provision and embed improvisation at all levels from Whole Class Ensemble Teaching up.
• Sheffield Music Hub – recognised for their strong strategic vision and excellence in provision at all levels.
The winner will be announced in March 2019.
This year, the awards have been administered by the National Youth Jazz Orchestra (NYJO), and celebrated as part of the Music Education Council Awards. The awards continue to be supported by The Musicians’ Company.
Claire Furlong, Learning & Participation Manager at NYJO, said: “On behalf of the whole panel I would like to extend our congratulations to all of this year’s applicants. We received so many submissions this year that demonstrated innovation and best practice in jazz education from early years right up to professional development that shortlisting was no easy task. It has been a privilege for the National Youth Jazz Orchestra to be tasked with managing the awards from this year. We are passionate about levelling the playing field in education so that every young person has the opportunity to reach their potential in jazz, no matter their background. Celebrating the excellent work our Music Education Hubs are doing is a very important part of this mission.”
Leslie East, Chairman of the Musicians’ Company Jazz Committee, said: “As supporters of the Will Michael Award for several years now, The Musicians’ Company is delighted that the new format for the Award has encouraged so many fantastic submissions from so many Hubs and Music Services. We congratulate NYJO on their excellent organisation and thank Rhinegold for so enthusiastically embracing the jazz award.”