The Artemis Project 2019

WAYJO's Young Women in Jazz Program Leader Gemma Farrell presents the Artemis Project - a new platform for Perth’s leading female jazz artists.

Showcasing music by Australia’s great female composers and arrangers, the Artemis Orchestra, joined by some of WA Youth Jazz Orchestra's emerging female performers, will open your ears to fresh new sounds.

We briefly spoke to Gemma ahead of the upcoming show, Saturday 19 October, at the Ellington Jazz Club in Perth.

Why/when did you start Artemis Orchestra?
I formed the Artemis Orchestra in 2017. I was preparing for that year's Young Women in Jazz workshops with Kate Pass, Talya Valenti and Alana Macpherson, three phenomenally talented jazz musicians and composers. I was reflecting on the work we do for the workshops, how much I enjoy working with these women, and how there is not enough opportunity to showcase the music of the incredible female jazz musicians we have in Perth. It was also the height of the #metoo era, so I wanted to create a safe space for women to make music together, and for their work as performing musicians and composers to be celebrated. I also think a lot about my own students when I put projects together. Normally, when you go out to see a big band in Perth, you see a band full of straight, white, able bodied men, and maybe a few women. I wanted to create a more diverse band so that all of my students could look at the band and think "yeah, I could do that one day." Most Perth boys have that already, but unfortunately I think with the way things are at the moment, a young girl is likely to look at your average Perth big band and think "wow, it's really hard to be a women in jazz." It's not that we don't have the talent either, as you will see from our gig, but it's just that no one else is shining a light on it.

Why did you call the ensemble Artemis?
I was uncomfortable with the idea of having the word "women" in the title, because we're not exclusive. As much as the project does showcase the work of Australian women, we don't have anywhere near as many women as men in the Perth jazz scene, so if we need the help of men I want them to feel welcome (in this concert we have two lovely men joining us). I would also warmly welcome any transgender or non-binary band members. I wanted to go for a Greek name to salute our Sydney friends, the Sirens big band, who did this a long time before we did. Eventually I read about Artemis, the goddess of hunting, wild animals, childbirth and protector of young women. The last part in particular seemed very apt, and I also liked the fact that there was the word "Art" in there as well.

Who's performing?
The band for the Saturday concert is made up of women who are professionals playing in the Artemis Orchestra, women who play with Artemis regularly but are also members of WAYJO, and WAYJO members. In putting the band together, I offered the opportunity to all the female members of WAYJO. When I found out how many were available, I looked at the gaps we had and hired members of Artemis to fill those gaps. We had two more gaps after that, there were no female drummers in WAYJO and Artemis' regular drummer was unavailable. We also needed another trombonist, and so to fill those gaps, we have the amazing Julius Rogers and Alex Parkinson from WAYJO's WNO joining us.

The full band is:
Vocals - Laura Igglesden and Lucy Iffla (Artemis and WAYJO)
Alto 1 - Tessa Campbell (Artemis and WAYJO)
Alto 2 - Shaniqa Ratnasigam and Holly Forster (WAYJO)
Tenor 1 - Claire Keet (Artemis and WAYJO)
Tenor 2 - Dee More (WAYJO)
Baritone - Jemima Mills (Artemis and WAYJO)
Trombone 1 - Alex Parkinson (WAYJO)
Trombone 2 - Holli Hatherley (Artemis and WAYJO)
Trombone 3 - Halle Mitchell (WAYJO)
Bass Trombone - Yvonne Gygli-Howell (Artemis)
Trumpet 1 - Charlie Teakle (Artemis and WAYJO)
Trumpet 2 - Jess Fiocco (Artemis)
Trumpet 3 - Jenny Bylund (WAYJO)
Trumpet 4 - Julia Wallace (Artemis and WAYJO)
Guitar - Candice Susnjar (Artemis)
Piano - Kirsten Symczycz (Artemis)
Bass - Kate Pass (Artemis)
Drums - Julius Rogers (WAYJO)
Percussion - Imogen Thompson (Artemis)

What might audience members most enjoy about this show?
We are performing some incredible compositions which they will likely have never heard before, some composed by members of the band including Candice Susnjar and Kate Pass. Everyone who wants to have a go at soloing is soloing. It's a going to be a real showcase of home grown talent. There a lots of powerful numbers, some Latin charts (my personal favourite thing is whenever Imogen whips out her triangle), it's two sets of bangers.

I'm so grateful to WAYJO for agreeing to do this once a year and I hope to see as many people there supporting this initiative as possible.

WAYJO Welcomes Japanese Exchange Musicians

SHOWAYJO is a special collaboration between musicians from the WA Youth Jazz Orchestra (WAYJO) in Perth, Western Australia and exchange partners from the Showa University of Music in Kawasaki, Japan.

These two groups come together to form a cross cultural big band playing classic big band repertoire as well as premiering a special new composition created by all the band members. WAYJO’s Ricki Malet (trumpet) and Showa University’s Masa Ikeda (trombone) will also share the stage with these young musicians.

Presented by WAYJO, and proudly supported by North West Shelf Gas over the past 5 years, this Cultural Exchange Through Music project joins talented performers across the hemispheres in a way the transcends linguistic boundaries.

The latest 10-track SHOWAYJO collaboration CD is FREE on entry (while stocks last). Preview a little of last year’s collaboration online HERE.

Enjoy this special night of live, cross-cultural jazz exploration, at one of Perth's finest jazz venues – for one night only!

SHOWAYJO: A Cross-Cultural Jazz Exploration
Sat 21 Sep, 7.00pm
The Ellington Jazz Club, Northbridge
Tickets from


WAYJO 2019-20 Associate Music Director Appointment

After a public call-out and rigorous selection process, the WA Youth Jazz Orchestra (WAYJO) is proud to announce Christopher Musitano has been selected as Associate Music Director for 2019-20, commencing September.

Proudly supported by the Simon Lee Foundation, the Assistant Music Director program offers a mentoring traineeship for a young and emerging musical director. The program is a rare opportunity for emerging band leaders to develop skills in conducting a large orchestral band, programming repertoire for an 18-piece big band, and develop the leadership skills required to inspire and enhance the skills and experience of band members.

WAYJO’s Artistic Director Dr Mace Francis selected Chris from a strong field of applications. “Chris has spent a long time with WAYJO as a musician, coming up through all the bands. This experience as Assistant Music Director will give Chris another perspective and set of skills he can take to his teaching and into the industry. We congratulate Chris on this appointment and welcome him back to the WAYJO family.”

Chris, who performed with WAYJO for 8-years, brings substantial knowledge and experience to the role, with a BA in Music Studies and Specialist Music Studies, and BMus (Hons) in Music - Jazz Performance.

“I applied for the role as I had seen the opportunities and growth that this position has allowed for those who have previously held it, especially during my time as a player in WAYJO. Getting to be on the conductor’s side of a band such as WAYJO is an opportunity not to be missed.”

“In addition to getting the experience of directing a big band, I am hoping that the position of Assistant Music Director opens me up to lots of new music and sounds that I haven’t heard before. Getting to hear new composers and players will allow me to better inform my own composing, teaching, and playing which will, in turn, help me to take on this position to the best of my ability.”

“I believe that WAYJO is an important musical institution in the Perth music scene as it fosters young talent while opening up young musicians to opportunities and music that they might not be exposed to in high school or university. Speaking personally, it helped and allowed me to grow in skill as a player, to meet and eventually play music with new friends, and fostered a love of jazz and big band music that then informed the direction of my career.”

“I think this position is important because it not only gives experience in running a band, but also gives those who have previously played in the band an opportunity to give back to the organization who helped them to get there in the first place.”

Applications for this paid traineeship position are invited annually. Head to, and subscribe to WAYJO eNews, to stay informed about all upcoming opportunities within the orchestras and organisation.

Chris Musitano (26) - WAYJO Associate Musical Director 2019-20.

#WAYJO2019 #MusicTraineeship

Media Contact
Justine Thornley
WAYJO Marketing
+61 (0)8 9471 1950

WAYJO in the USA - 2019 Brubeck Colony Scholarship Recipients

Two WAYJO members have returned from an incredible week of working with jazz luminaries and other exemplary students at the Brubeck Institute in Stockton, California.

The standard of the all the students and staff was jaw dropping, with Julia Wallace (pictured right) and Cameron Fermoyle (pictured left) doing a superlative job representing WAYJO in a spectacularly creative musical environment.

"Congratulations to the WAYJO team for continuing to provide these kind of opportunities to further develop Australia's place in the international jazz community. Massive thanks to Patrick Langham and Randi Sandoli for administrating and directing all involved at the Brubeck Summer Colony 2019." - Marty Pervan, WAYJO TNO Musical Director.

Some words from the participants;
"We had an incredible time at the Brubeck Colony. It was a whirlwind experience where we were in a busy environment surrounded by amazing American music students and a world class faculty, including Carl Allen, Steve Davis and Essiet Essiet. Ingrid Jensen worked with Cam's ensemble all week and he learnt so much from her unique and freeing teaching style. Steve Davis and Greg Tardy were my ensemble teachers and I feel so lucky to have had such professional and experienced musicians be so kind and encouraging the whole week."

"One of the things that the faculty would always mention is the importance of deep listening and researching. I think as young musicians now on steaming platforms and such, the process of checking out records has deteriorated, creating a lesser grasp of the history and mastery of the music."

"The Brubeck Colony has enlightened us on this idea through multiple rehearsals, masterclasses and clinics, with some of the world’s best, which I believe has begun maturing our sense of musicianship and has created a profound new hunger for learning and striving to achieve greatness everyday."

"Advice to people planning to audition and participate in the Brubeck Colony would be to learn as many tunes as humanly possible between now and then. It’ll mean you’ll be able to play in all the Jam sessions and get the most out of the rehearsals, so the faculty can spend the time on imparting their wisdom on deeper level."

Thank you very much WAYJO for this incredible opportunity - Julia & Cam!

WAYJO celebrates 10,000 patrons to His Majesty’s Theatre

WAYJO is delighted to announce that today the 10,000th ticket was issued to performances and events at His Majesty’s Theatre since they commenced their regular programming at the venue in 2017.

WAYJO’s annual ticketed program held Downstairs at The Maj features guest artists from around Australia and the world, including some of the world’s best jazz practitioners and offering outstanding experiences for young musicians to work with these artists.

The 2018 program, Women in Jazz, featured almost exclusively female guest artists, while the 2019 season, An American Jazz Story, has seen six out of the first seven performances played to sold-out houses.

Debuting in 2017, Jazz for Juniors, a program of concerts aimed at under 7 year olds and their carers, has achieved similar success, with many sold out performances. Meanwhile, WAYJO’s Education Concerts and Workshops, held Downstairs at the Maj, have allowed local students to gain an insight into the work of visiting guest artists and big band jazz music.

The King Street Corner Pocket Jazz Festival, debuting in 2018 as part of WAYJO’s 35th anniversary celebrations, saw His Majesty’s Theatre as the central hub for this fringe-style event with over 3,000 tickets issued for the festival each year. Downstairs at the Maj, the Dress Circle Bar, and Barre Café all hosted events during the Festival which featured the best of Perth’s emerging and established jazz talent.

WAYJO General Manager Simon Keen said audiences at His Majesty’s Theatre had embraced WAYJO’s presence at the venue, generating opportunities for the company to develop new funding streams and a wider reach.

“The opportunity for us to perform at this iconic Western Australian venue has opened doors in many ways, allowing us to build our programs, host donors, deliver engaging and exciting guest artist programs and develop our young musicians,” he said.

“We couldn’t be more grateful to the staff at The Maj for all of their support.”

Lloyd Smith, WAYJO Chair said: “The WAYJO Board greatly appreciates the support of our sponsors, donors, and attendees, in particular the State Government of Western Australia through the Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries. As WAYJO’s annual audiences have more than quadrupled, we are proud to be a leading provider of opportunities for young musicians and to see WAYJO take a leadership role as the jazz sector provides accessible and affordable live music experiences in Perth.”

WAYJO’s program of events at His Majesty’s Theatre continues until November this year. Plans for the 2020 season are well underway with the theme of Homegrown at the core, with a focus on bringing the best Western Australian and Australian talent working interstate and overseas to Perth to work with our musicians across the season.

Media Contact

Simon KeenWAYJO General Manager
+61 (0)407 990 483

2020 WAYJO Auditions Open

Audition applications for participation in 2020 WA Youth Jazz Orchestra (WAYJO) big bands are now open. Musicians interested in performing jazz and improvised music, who will be aged 14-25 (28 if in full-time study) and located in Perth during 2020, are encouraged to apply.

All performer positions are auditioned annually, offering members the opportunity to perform a range of jazz styles at some of Perth’s best venues, and travel regionally, nationally and internationally with top band leaders and touring guest artists.

A total of fifty-four places are available within three big bands – the Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday Night Orchestras – each auditioning for Saxophones (Alto, Tenor & Baritone), Trumpets, Trombones (Tenor & Bass), Guitar, Bass, Piano, Drums plus Vocalists.

Auditions are held at WAYJO’s rehearsal studio in Maylands Hall, located close to public transport, with parking available along Eighth Avenue.

Approximately 15 minutes in duration, all audition dates and times are allocated on a first come first served basis – so apply early;
Thursday 28 November, 2019 | 4.00pm – 9.00pm
Friday 29 November, 2019 | 4.00pm – 9.00pm
Saturday 30 November, 2019 | 9.00am – 6.30pm
Sunday 1 December, 2019 | 9.00am – 6.30pm

Whether aspiring to be a professional jazz musician or composer, WAYJO has something to offer YOU!

2020 WAYJO Audition Applications close 11.59pm, Monday 11 November 2019 – if not filled prior.

Visit for full details – but don’t delay, as WAYJO’s audition places booked out last year!

The WAYJO Education program is supported by Healthway, promoting the Act-Belong-Commit message. 


WAYJO 2019-20 Assistant Music Director Applications Open

Proudly supported by the Simon Lee Foundation, the WA Youth Jazz Orchestra (WAYJO) Assistant Music Director program offers a mentoring traineeship for a young and emerging musical director.

The program offers the opportunity to develop skills in conducting a large orchestral band, programming repertoire for an 18-piece big band, and developing the leadership skills required to inspire and enhance the skills and experience of band members.

By offering artistic and industry expertise and world-class rehearsal and performance opportunities, WAYJO provides a framework for emerging jazz musicians and composers to become successful professionals.

WAYJO have opened applications for this position to fill 1 September 2019 to 31 December 2019. Applications close Friday 23 August 2019, 9.00AM AWST.

Head to the WAYJO Assistant Musical Director page for details and application form.

King St Corner Pocket Schedule Changes for Prince Lane

We regret to inform that PRINCE LANE GLAMOUR BAR has experienced serious water damage, forcing temporary closure for safety reasons. We're saddened by the news, and hope they’ll be back on track very soon!

Please rest assured that we are still full steam ahead with the festival, announcing the following 10 performances that were to be at the Prince Lane venue have been rescheduled as follows;

- Thursday 4th July -
Fat Sparrow, 6.00PM Prince Lane - cancelled.
Libby Hammer, 7.30PM Downstairs at The Maj - instead of the additional WAYJO Monday Night Orchestra show.
Phoebus Cartel, 9.45PM Dress Circle Bar (His Majesty’s Theatre - first floor).

- Friday 5th July -
The Greig-Kelly Quintet, 5.30PM The Sewing Room (off Wolf Lane).
Reece Clark & Friends, 7.30PM Reece Clark Downstairs at The Maj - instead of the additional WAYJO Tuesday Night Orchestra show.
Perth, Wind and Fire, 9.45PM Dress Circle Bar (His Majesty’s Theatre - first floor).

- Saturday 6th July -
Holli Scott & the Rush Hour Circus, 4.30PM Downstairs at The Maj - please note this earlier show time.
Kohesia Ensemble, 7.30PM Downstairs at The Maj - instead of the additional WAYJO Wednesday Night Orchestra show.
Perth Cabaret Collective, 9.00PM Downstairs at The Maj - instead of the James Sewell Quintet.
James Sewell Quintet, 9.45PM Dress Circle Bar (His Majesty’s Theatre - first floor).

We’ve worked hard to ensure the festival will continue as intended with the minimal amount of disruption. Sincere thanks to the team at Perth Theatre Trust & His Majesty’s Theatre for assisting with these changes at short notice!

Refunds are available for any shows cancelled or time changed (e.g. some WAYJO shows). For shows with a change of venue, the existing tickets will be honoured at the new venue.

If you have any questions concerning festival tickets, please contact Perth Theatre Trust Ticketing on 6212 9292.

King Street Corner Pocket Jazz Festival 2019 is your gateway to exciting new Jazz discovery! Tickets and 10-show discount Pocket Pass vouchers on sale now at

Keep up with all the latest festival info at

2019 Festival Lineup

Click to download festival schedule PDF

#KSCP19 #PerthWinterArts

WAYJO Announces New Partnership with MinterEllison

The WA Youth Jazz Orchestra (WAYJO) announces an exciting new partnership with one of the Asia-Pacific’s premier lay firms, MinterEllison.

MinterEllison are the naming rights partners for the WAYJO Monday Night Orchestra, henceforth referred to as the WAYJO MinterEllison Monday Night Orchestra.

WAYJO General Manager Simon Keen is positive about the benefits the partnership will bring to both parties.

“Partnering with MinterEllison, a law firm with a strong reputation for excellence, showcases the value we place in our orchestra members, and will contribute significantly towards our mission of offering outstanding opportunities to young musicians. The Monday Night Orchestra reaches audiences in excess of 3,000 people annually, and is a first step for many of our members as they hone their skills in big band jazz. We look forward to a long and fruitful partnership with MinterEllison over the coming years, and thank them wholeheartedly for their support”.

WAYJO are also seeking naming rights partners for their Tuesday and Wednesday Night Orchestras.

In 2018, WAYJO played to 8,000 people at ticketed performances and reached over 30,000 people through all of the company’s programs. 2019 has seen WAYJO sell out their first 5 concerts as part of the Jazz at The Maj season, embark on a regional tour through the South West of WA, visit Japan and Showa University of Music, and have many more performances coming up throughout the year.

For further WAYJO partnership enquiries, please contact General Manager Simon Keen on +61 8 9471 1950.

Monday Night Orchestra

Discover Award Winning Jazz at King Street Corner Pocket

King Street Corner Pocket Jazz Festival returns to warm the winter city with hot jazz, 4-6 July.

This year’s WAM Song of the Year (SOTY) Award nominees have been announced, with Jazz musician Ben Matthews in the leader’s pack with two nominations in Jazz & World, plus the Kate Pass Kohesia Ensemble in the World category.

All Jazz nominees, and many more, can be experienced live at King Street Corner Pocket Festival.

Ben Matthews performs Saturday 6th July with Holli Scott and the Rush Hour Circus at Prince Lane - 6.00pm, in a show transporting you to another age and place, drawing from artists such as Tom Waits, Nick Cave, Billie Holiday, and Nina Simone. Holli Scott and Ben Matthewsalso present a curated show of original music and arranged jazz standards at Cheeky Sparrow - 8.30pm.

Daniel Susnjar Afro-Peruvian Jazz Group is also a hot festival and SOTY awards favourite. This lively 7-piece perform with guest vocalist Nico Bahamonde, presenting a tribute to the ground-breaking album "Soul of Black Peru" compiled by David Byrne (Talking Heads) at the Sewing Room on Thursday 4th July, 7.00pm. Susnjar also drums at the festival with Perth Wind and Fire, HeliumHolli Scott & the Rush Hour Circus, TRISK, and Kohesia Ensemble.

Piano and drum duo Imogen Thomson / Austin Salisbury present Mejadra, a melting pot of modern Jazz and Afro-Cuban inspired originals at the InterContinental Perth City Centre, Thursday 4th of July, 6.00pm.

Nick Abbey performs on bass in TRISK, an instrumental group influenced by hip-hop, jazz, R&B, pop, and world. TRISK perform in the Barre Café at His Majesty’s Theatre, Thursday 4th July, 5.30pm. Nick also appears with the Anea Duratovic Quintet.

Multi-instrumentalist Tim Newhouse presents Synken (the Danish word for immersion) at the Dress Circle Bar at His Majesty’s Theatre, Thursday 4th July, 7.00pm.

Led by double bassist Kate Pass, Kohesia Ensemble present Kate’s original compositions influenced by her passion for both jazz and Persian music. Explore unusual time structures, microtonal melodies and exotic instruments at Prince Lane Glamour Bar, Saturday 6th July, 7.30pm. You can also catch Kate with Phoebus Cartel and the Perth Cabaret Collective.

2017-18 SOTY Jazz award winner Harry Mitchell also makes festival appearances on keys with The Greig-Kelly Quintet, Helium, Daniel Susnjar Afro-Peruvian Jazz Group, and Trio Trio.

Festival attendees also win big savings using a 10-voucher discount Pocket Pass for $125 - that’s only $12.50 per show, each offering just under an hour of quality, local music.

No matter who the winner is this year, King Street Corner Pocket Jazz Festival has all Jazz styles covered - head to for festival info.

Tickets and Pocket Pass vouchers are on sale now at