WAYJO Statement on COVID-19

WA Youth Jazz Orchestra (WAYJO) have been monitoring Government directions on the COVID-19 pandemic. The WAYJO Board and Staff have developed Business Continuity and Risk Management Plans to ensure the safety and health of our young members and the viability of the company moving forwards.

After careful deliberation, WAYJO have cancelled all public activities and rehearsals until May 31.

These activities include:

  • Previously announced cancellations of Swinging at the Embassy Ballroom and Jazz for Juniors,
  • South West Regional Tour
  • Polka Dots and Moonbeams, featuring Kristin Berardi
  • Weekly rehearsal programs for our 54 musicians.

WAYJO envisages more cancellations of events in the future, a blow to Australian artists who were the focus of our 2020 Homegrown season. However, WAYJO recognises the insecure nature of artists’ livelihoods during the current climate, and is endeavouring to support all contracted and casual artists during this time, including proceeding with our 2020 commissioning program.

WAYJO also recognises the loss of income for Back and Front of House staff at the venues we perform in, and hope that these arts workers, many of them casual employees, receive the support they require.

The Board and Management at WAYJO will continue to re-evaluate the program in the coming months, and encourage those who are able to continue to support the sector by donating or purchasing music from affected artists.

WAYJO has built the future of Australian jazz for 37 years, and we are committed to delivering on this mission throughout 2020 and beyond.

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Contacts

Simon Keen
WAYJO General Manager
simon.keen@wayjo.com
+61 8 9471 1950

Justine Thornley
WAYJO Marketing
marketing@wayjo.com
+61 8 9471 1950

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WAYJO Statement on Concert Cancellations

WA Youth Jazz Orchestra (WAYJO) are sad to announce the cancellation of our first two concerts of the year, Swinging at the Embassy Ballroom and Jazz for Juniors shows.

WAYJO is a small arts company but everything we do is with our members in mind. While audiences for these performances are tracking well under the 500 person limit set for gatherings per the Federal and State Governments’ directives, we also have a number of considerations to take into account when producing our concerts.

For Jazz for Juniors, don’t want to expose our youngest audiences and their carers to any risk.

Swinging at the Embassy Ballroom sales have suffered from a definite change in audience behaviour. Within all current health guidelines the performance could still go ahead, however the sheer cost of mounting this concert is no longer viable.

Those affected are entitled to a full refund of your ticket purchase. Perth Theatre Trust will process a full refund of your ticket costs and applicable handling fees onto the credit card that was used to purchase the tickets. You do not need to do anything. Please allow up to 15 business days for the refund to be processed.

If you paid in cash or with other payment methods, our box office team will contact you personally to organise your refund.

The Board and Staff at WAYJO will be monitoring all updates on the COVID-19 pandemic and reviewing all programming decisions based on stringent risk assessments.

WAYJO recognises the loss of income our sector is facing due to event cancellations or low attendance. With this in mind, WAYJO will endeavour to find the means to support in some way all contracted artists for their scheduled work in 2020, regardless of whether they are able to appear with WAYJO or not. We think this is an important show of support in our sector, and we hope that other arts organisations are able to do the same as much as practically possible. We wish we could also support the Front and Back of House workers who will suffer as a result of event cancellations, but we are not in a position to do so.

Finally, this is a time where WAYJO needs every ounce of support our friends and supporters can provide. If you have tickets to a cancelled show, please consider a donation to the company. If you have the capacity, talk to us about the meaningful impact every donation has for our company. We’d love as many of our supporters as possible to set up a weekly $5 donation to help keep the lights on. More information on donating can be found at wayjo.com/support

Most of all, we wish for our members, families, and supporters to stay healthy as we navigate through these difficult times. We hope to see you at a performance again in the very near future.

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Contacts

Simon Keen
WAYJO General Manager
simon.keen@wayjo.com
+61 8 9471 1950

Justine Thornley
WAYJO Marketing
marketing@wayjo.com
+61 8 9471 1950

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WAYJO Kicks off 2020 with a Tribute to the Embassy Ballroom

PLEASE NOTE: In response to COVID-19, WAYJO sadly announce cancellation of Swinging at the Embassy Ballroom.

Ticket holders for this show; Perth Theatre Trust will process a full refund back to the credit card making the purchase, and be in touch with those who paid by cash or other methods.
You do not need to do anything.
Please allow up to 15 business days for the refund to be processed.
If you can, please consider a ticket refund or other donation to WAYJO at https://wayjo.com/support

Full statement: https://wayjo.com/covid-19-concert-cancellations

We apologise for any inconvenience caused, and hope to see you at another WAYJO performance in the near future.

 

 

One of Perth’s lost treasures, for over 50 years the Embassy Ballroom hosted hundreds of performances by the cream of WA’s entertainers and performers, as well as sublime international guest artists.

Swinging at the Embassy Ballroom, on the main stage of His Majesty’s Theatre Friday 27 March, will whisk you back to a bygone era of style and glamour with the most beloved big band jazz music of its time.

Special guest vocalists Victoria Newton and Anita Wardell join all three of WAYJO’s famed orchestras at His Majesty’s Theatre to croon, swing and melt your heart. These two vocalists, who were singing together in London during the 1990s, will entertain you with their style, vocal virtuosity and humour.

Victoria Newton states “I am so looking forward to the ‘Swinging at the Embassy Ballroom’ show because I get to work with the phenomenon that is WAYJO. The bands are so brilliant and it’s always such a joy to sing with their magnificent sound and swinging grooves behind you!”

“I can’t wait for this show” says Anita Wardell. “I’m so looking forward to making music with the amazing WAYJO orchestra and together share this wonderful art form with the audience… What an honour for me to sing with that lush and super swinging sound behind me.”

Tickets for this, and all season shows, are on sale now at Perth Theatre Trust.

For more information on WAYJO’s 2020 season, please visit wayjo.com/season

#WAYJO2020

Photograph of the Embassy Ballroom by Fred Flood (c1940)
Opened as ‘Temple Court Cabaret and Tea Rooms’ in 1928, it was located corner of William St & The Esplanade in Perth until 1982. 
City of Perth’s Fred Flood Photograph Collection. 
State Library of Western Australia image: slwa_b3010984_9.


WAYJO MinterEllison Monday Night Orchestra 2019

WAYJO Announces 2020 Sponsor a Seat Opportunity

Sponsor a Seat

Give the gift of music by sponsoring one of Perth’s finest young jazz musicians.

For over 35 years, the West Australian Youth Jazz Orchestra has been an integral part of Perth’s cultural landscape. WAYJO has been at the forefront of forging professional, contemporary big band, ensemble and solo jazz artists since 1983, with an impressive alumna including international jazz luminaries Linda May Han Oh, Dane Alderson, Troy Roberts and Mat Jodrell.

WAYJO is a unique, not-for-profit organisation, showcasing 54 rising stars across not one but three big bands, each with a unique focus on their own eras of jazz repertoire, including bold new Australian works annually commissioned by the orchestra.

15 saxophonists; 12 trumpeters; 12 trombonists; plus 3 guitarists, pianists, bassist, drummers and vocalists, are all auditioned annually for each highly coveted seat. WAYJO musicians have the opportunity to hone skills by working with professional musical directors, to perform in Perth’s top venues, work with high calibre guest artists, take part in international exchanges, all while forming professional relationships that can last a lifetime.

Performing at community and corporate events, touring regionally and offering school concerts and workshops, these musicians are dedicated to their craft, and work towards reaching their greatest potential as early-career musicians, and contributors to society.

WAYJO contributes approximately $12,000 per seat in developing each of its 54 band members annually, with Government funding covering less than 15%.

Sponsoring a Seat brings much needed funds, while offering a personal connection with one of our talented musicians throughout the year. By supporting a performer, you directly share in the growth your contribution makes.

$500 Orchestra Seat Sponsors, paid one off or in quarterly instalments; all benefit with:

  • two complimentary tickets to a WAYJO performance, the first at the beginning of the year and the second at the end of the year, so you can experience the amazing transformation our programs make to artists;
  • the chance to meet your sponsored orchestra member during interval at a WAYJO performance;
  • invitation to a WAYJO open rehearsal, giving you a behind-the-scenes look at what it takes to make the music;
  • a short, personalised thank you video from the WAYJO musician you have sponsored;
  • a personalised thank you letter from our Artistic Director, Mace Francis, at the start of the year, outlining the annual program;
  • two letters from the corresponding band’s Music Director, outlining the progress of the band in June, and sharing their band’s successes at the end of the year;
  • optional recognition as an Orchestra Seat Sponsor in the WAYJO season brochure, on the WAYJO website, and on social media.

This is your chance to be a real part of WAYJO, and leave a lasting legacy with one of Western Australia’s longest lived and vibrant arts companies.

For more information on how you can help support this unique organisation and the opportunities it provides, please visit wayjo.com/support

 

Hashtags: #WAYJO2020 #SponsorASeat

WAYJO MinterEllison Monday Night Orchestra
WAYJO MinterEllison Monday Night Orchestra at the Quarry Amphitheatre. Photograph by Rick Mason (2019).


WAYJO Announces 2020 Season with an All-Australian Guest Artist Program

The West Australian Youth Jazz Orchestra (WAYJO) launches its 2020 season, Homegrown, celebrating the depth of talent Australia has produced in the jazz scene, with a suite of Australian guest artists in an exciting program.

After a 2019 focus on the birthplace of jazz, the USA, featuring numerous sell-out performances, WAYJO brings a stunning array of Australian artists from interstate and abroad to perform with the company’s three 18-piece jazz big bands. As part of the Homegrown season, WAYJO have also commissioned a number of new compositions, presenting the World Premiere of nearly three hours of new music.

WAYJO recognises the importance of showcasing Australian musicians and the successes of over 35 years of WAYJO alumni on the Australian and international scenes. Our vision to “build the future of Australian jazz” is the cornerstone rationale behind the 2020 program, offering outstanding opportunities for young Western Australian musicians and providing WAYJO’s growing audience with fresh perspectives and experiences.

Homegrown kicks off with a tribute to one of Perth’s legendary and much missed venues, with Swinging at the Embassy Ballroom. From 1928 to 1982, the Embassy hosted many of Perth’s swinging jazz legends as well as artists from across the ocean, and WAYJO will remind nostalgic audiences of the music of those years on the main stage at His Majesty’s Theatre. Featuring all three of WAYJO’s big bands and guest vocalists Anita Wardell & Victoria Newton this will be a concert event for young and old alike.

Jazz at The Maj returns from May to October, featuring stunning concerts in the beautifully intimate Downstairs at The Maj. The season begins in May with WAYJO welcoming vocalist Kristin Berardi (Qld) in Polka Dots and Moonbeams. Kristin wowed Perthaudiences at the 2019 Perth International Jazz Festival with her sensuous voice and joins the WAYJO Tuesday Night Orchestra.

In June, WAYJO is proud to present a true legend of Australian jazz, pianist Judy Bailey (NSW) to perform My Favourite Things. A force of nature, Judy joins the WAYJO Wednesday Night Orchestra, Perth’s premiere big band in performing  new jazz composition, for two unmissable concerts.

July sees WAYJO debuting our first major commissions for 2020. WAYJO alumni Andrew Murray (Vic) joins Artistic Director Dr Mace Francis to present Come Together. For the first time, the WAYJO MinterEllison Monday Night Orchestra will perform works composed specifically for this ensemble, a rare challenge for the most junior WAYJO band. However, with well-known music like The Beatles’ “Come Together” receiving a whole new jazz arrangement audiences are sure to be surprised and enchanted in this World Premiere event.

One of WAYJO’s recent success stories, Alana Macpherson, alumna and former WAYJO Assistant Music Director, joins WAYJO in September for the second major commission of the year, All or Nothing At All. Alana, 2018 WAM Award winner as Best Brass/String/Woodwind Instrumentalist, studies her Masters of Jazz Composition at the MUG University of Music and Performing Arts, Austria, and brings her saxophone and composing skills to bear with the Wednesday Night Orchestra.

Toshi Clinch (Vic) offers his unique arrangements of classic Hollywood films to WAYJO in October to close out the Jazz at The Maj season with A Golden Age of Jazz on Film. Following the success of WAYJO’s 2019 concerts, Jazz at the Movies, these reimagined works of Quincy Jones, John Williams and more will be a family favourite.

WAYJO’s guest artist program is proudly supported by the Minderoo Foundation in their second year of partnership with WAYJO.

Punctuating the Homegrown season will be the return of the King Street Corner Pocket Jazz Festival in 2020. Showcasing the depth of talent in Western Australia, over 50 performances by the state’s emerging and established jazz acts will feature across the three days of the Festival. From big band to smaller intimate ensembles and solo musicians, King Street Corner Pocket is the most accessible and fun way to see multiple acts in the same night in easy walking distance. WAYJO will also present The Debut Collection during the Festival, featuring commissioned works from the company’s Composer-in-Residence program. King Street Corner Pocket is supported by the City of Perth.

The sell-out Jazz for Juniors returns as part of WAYJO’s ongoing Act-Belong-Commit education program, which also features dedicated schools concerts Downstairs at The Maj, and South-West and Geraldton Regional Tours.

Homegrown continues WAYJO’s focus on supporting the growth of jazz in the State and furthering the representation of female artists, with five of the seven guest artists programmed outstanding women in the field.

WAYJO’s 2019 season saw continued audience growth, with the Jazz at the Maj season reaching 92% of ticketed capacity, a 10% increase in audiences at Corner Pocket, and box office targets exceeded by 12%.

WAYJO is the small company that has WA’s arts community buzzing, with an exciting 2020 on the horizon.

 

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WAYJO 2020 Season Overview

His Majesty’s Theatre
Swinging at the Embassy Ballroom
Featuring Anita Wardell and Victoria Newton
March 27

Downstairs at The Maj
"Jazz at The Maj"

Polka Dots and Moonbeams
Featuring Kristin Berardi
May 1 & 2

My Favourite Things
Featuring Judy Bailey
June 5 & 6

Come Together (World Premiere)
Featuring Andrew Murray and Mace Francis
July 3 & 4

All or Nothing At All
Featuring Alana Macpherson
September 4 & 5

A Golden Age of Jazz on Film
Featuring Toshi Clinch
October 2 & 3

Jazz for Juniors
April 14-15, July 7-8, September 29-30

King Street Corner Pocket Jazz Festival
Various Venues around King and Hay Streets, Perth – July 30 to August 1

 

WAYJO 2020 Sponsors

Government Partner Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries & Lotterywest

Principal Partner North West Shelf Gas

Guest Artist Partner The Minderoo Foundation

Education and Regional Tour Partner Healthway

Naming Rights Partner Monday Night Orchestra MinterEllison

Major Partner St John of God Health Care

Offical Partner Gerard Daniels

Hotel Partner InterContinental City Centre Perth

Festival Partner City of Perth

Venue Partners His Majesty’s TheatreWest Australian Academy of Performing Arts

Supporting Partners Minuteman Press Perth, City of Perth Parking, ActivITRTR FM 92.1

 

Media Contact

Simon Keen, WAYJO General Manager
simon.keen@wayjo.com
0407 990 483


King St Corner Pocket Festival 2020 Applications

King St Corner Pocket Festival 2020 Call Out for Performers

Perth and Western Australia host some of the most outstanding jazz talent in the country. King St Corner Pocket showcases these exceptional local artists, emerging and established, in a fun filled 3 night festival, where you don’t have to walk more than 50 meters to discover a new sound.

The Festival, now in its third consecutive year, runs Thursday 30 July to Saturday 1 August in Perth.

Over fifty 45-50 minute performance slots are on offer for local improvised and jazz musical acts to perform at His Majesty’s Theatre, plus other exciting activated venues in and around King Street.

West Australian based performers interested in performing at the festival can apply from Tuesday 18 February, 9.00am. Applications close Friday 20 March 2020, 5.00pm AWST.

Applicants will be notified application outcomes by mid-April, with the full festival line up announcement in May.

King Street Corner Pocket Jazz Festival is supported by the City of Perth.

For more information about the King Street Corner Pocket Jazz Festival, please visit cornerpocket.com.au

 

2020 Festival Partners

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2020 WAYJO Composer Residencies Announced

Now in its 13th year, the WA Youth Jazz Orchestra’s Composer-in-Residence program has annually supported two emerging composers to develop new works for a large jazz ensemble, offering both generous commission fees and artistic mentorship.

This year we had a large number of applications which makes the decisions very difficult. This is a good indication that jazz composition is still alive and well in this country, especially seeing the quality of the submissions.

However, only two composers could be selected to fill the Associate Composer in Residence and the Composer in Residence positions. They were chosen based on their previous work, education, and proposed ideas for the commission.

WAAPA composition graduate Maddie Ivy from WA was successful as the 2020 WAYJO Associate Composer in Residence.

Maddy has a great grasp on orchestration and craft, as well as creative ways of using the big band and a variety of genres and musical settings.

Des Cannings from NSW will be the 2020 WAYJO Composer in Residence.

Des’s skill and craft in writing for big band instrumentation and respect for the tradition was displayed in his previous work. Des hopes to push his concepts of melodic development and creative form in ways he has not previously been able to do.

The WAYJO Wednesday Night Orchestra will premier and record these young composer’s exciting new works at the 2020 King St Corner Pocket Jazz Festival, running 30 July to 1 August.

For more information about WAYJO’s composer in residence program and commissioning, please visit wayjo.com/composer-in-residence

 

Des Cannings - WAYJO 2020 Composer in Residence
Des Cannings - 2020 WAYJO Composer in Residence

 

Maddie Ivy - 2020 WAYJO Associate Composer in Residence

 

Contacts

Justine Thornley
WAYJO Marketing
marketing@wayjo.com
+61 8 9471 1950

Mace Francis
WAYJO Artistic Director
mace.francis@wayjo.com
+61 8 9471 1950


2020 Young Women in Jazz Registrations Open

WAYJO is calling for female identifying instrumentalist aged 14 to 25, interested in playing or studying jazz or improvised music, to take part in workshops to collaborate and learn with fellow female musicians.

Young Women in Jazz is an 8-week series of Saturday workshops, commencing 2 May 2020. Conducted in small groups with leading guest artists, educators and WAYJO Alumnae, these workshops build support networks, refine skills and increase performer confidence.

This year’s special guest tutors include the international multi-award winning vocalist Kristin Berardi, and legendary pianist/composer Judy Bailey.

A final public performance, held at the Ellington Jazz Club on Sunday 21 June, will showcase the participants newly acquired skills in a professional jazz venue setting.

Run in Perth since 2014, and developed in 2002 by Sydney Improvised Music Association (SIMA) and Dr. Sandy Evans OAM, the Young Women’s Jazz Workshops are specifically designed to inspire young women to play jazz and pursue a future in music.

WAYJO acknowledges program partners SIMA (Sydney Improvised Music Association) as well as St John of God Health Care for their continued support of the program here in Western Australia.

Registrations for the 2020 Young Women in Jazz Program open Friday 20 December, 2019 and close Friday 24 April, 2020.

For more information about the Young Women in Jazz program, or to register, please visit wayjo.com/young-women-in-jazz 

#YoungWomenInJazz

Contacts

Gemma Farrell
Young Women in Jazz Program Coordinator 
education@wayjo.com

Justine Thornley
WAYJO Marketing
marketing@wayjo.com
+61 8 9471 1950

 

Young Women in Jazz 2019
2019 Young Women in Jazz Participants


2020 WAYJO Internship

Looking to gain experience behind the scenes in the arts sector, or know someone who might be?

WAYJO is on the hunt for an intern for 2020! Our internships provide hands on experience in how a busy arts organisation runs.

WAYJO runs roughly 50 events per year including a major festival, international exchange programs, school workshops and performances, regional tours and corporate performances.

If you are enthusiastic about the arts, organised and think you have something to offer WAYJO, then please send Jess an email at admin@wayjo.com by 5pm, Wednesday 22 January, 2020.

Ideally we are looking for people with some experience in Photoshop or InDesign, studying Marketing or Administration, and have a passion for the arts. As a bonus, our intern has the opportunity to see performances and gain important networks in the arts industry.

* Please note this is an unpaid Internship, with up to one day a week workload *

 

- Photo by Josh Wells


WAYJO 2020 Composer in Residence Applications Open

The WA Youth Jazz Orchestra (WAYJO) is offering two young jazz composers paid, professional development opportunities to develop new works and enhance music writing and conducting skills. Such opportunities are rarely offered in Australia.

WAYJO continues to support composers and generate original Australian content through its unique Composer-in-Residence program, presented for the twelfth consecutive year in 2020.

WAYJO's Composer in Residence program annually supports two young, emerging composers to develop new works for large jazz ensemble, offering both generous commission fees and artistic mentorship.

The program is run under the guidance of WAYJO’s Artistic Director, Dr Mace Francis (winner – APRA/AMCOS Jazz Work of the Year and international Scrivere in Jazz prize; finalist – Freedman Jazz Fellowship; nominee – Jazz ‘Bell’ Awards).

"Working with talented young Australian composers to bring their new works to life is a highlight in the WAYJO Wednesday Night Orchestra calendar. I am always amazed at what young people can create when they work together in a safe, focused and creative space. I look forward to hearing what is created again in 2020." - Dr Mace Francis.

Opportunities

COMPOSER IN RESIDENCE is open to any jazz composer aged 30 years or younger (as at 1st January 2020), residing in Australia. $4,000 is offered to develop three new, original compositions. Flights and accommodation included (unless a resident of the Perth metropolitan area).

ASSOCIATE COMPOSER IN RESIDENCE is open to any jazz composer aged 21 years or younger (as at 1st January 2020), residing in Western Australia. $2,000 is offered the Associate to develop two new, original compositions.

Both positions offer professional advice and mentoring, opportunities to rehearse and perform with WAYJO’s premier 18-piece big band, and an opportunity to premier the works at the 2020 King St Corner Pocket Jazz Festival.

This program is open to all Australian composers (citizens and permanent residents). Successful applicants will be required to compose the works (each six to eight minutes in duration) by Monday June 8, 2020, for performance by the WA Youth Jazz Orchestra Wednesday Night Orchestra.

Deadline

Applications open Monday 18 November, 2019 and close Friday 17 January, 2020 at 5.00pm AWST. Successful applicants will be notified by Friday 24 January, 2020.

Please Note: The WAYJO offices will be closed for the holidays Friday 20 December, 2019 to Wednesday 8 January, 2020.

Find Out More

For more information, please visit wayjo.com/composer-in-residence, or contact the WAYJO office during business hours on +61 8 9471 1950.

 

2019 Composer in Residence Scott van Gemert leading his work at 2019 King St Corner Pocket Jazz Festival - Photos by Eliza Cowling.

 

Media Contact

Justine Thornley, WAYJO Marketing
marketing@wayjo.com
+61 8 9471 1950