Alex Silver QuintetEnrolments are open for The Young Women's Jazz Workshops run by SIMA and the Sydney Conservatorium of Music.

This unique short course aimed at women who are interested in pursuing a professional career in jazz and improvised music.

Entry is by audition and written application and classes run for three hours over eights weeks on a Saturday morning. The course culminates in a public concert, giving the performers a chance to showcase their skills on stage.

The young women who participate in the course come from varying backgrounds and previous experience: high school girls looking at studying jazz in the future, university students who wanted to diversify and develop their improvisation skills and women who want to learn how to play jazz. The amount of previous knowledge is not important, however enthusiasm is a must! the courses are different year-on-year and many girls have participated several years over. Each year with a new group of teachers where they learn and develop new skills.

‘Sadly, women are still very under-represented in jazz – professionally and in tertiary courses. This course provides a supportive environment for aspiring female jazz musicians to explore their creativity and develop their skills in this exciting and challenging musical genre’. Sandy Evans, OAM (course founder, musician/composer)

SIMA has been running this innovative and unique course successfully SIMA since 2001. Due to it;s popularity, in 2010 we partnered with the Sydney Conservatorium Open Academy. Each year, the standard of applicants has risen significantly, indicating that the course is having an impact on the number of women seriously studying and practicing jazz and improvised music.

The course graduates make up the majority of the women studying at the Jazz Course at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music. In 2013, no less than 5 young women from our course were accepted into the Sydney Conservatorium to study jazz.

Students have also been accepted into jazz courses at the Western NSW University, the University of Western Sydney, the Canberra School of Music and The Victorian College of the Arts. Most of these students would not have had the knowledge or confidence to successfully apply to these courses having not had the experience of these workshops.

More information here

Editor of Jazz Australia, formerly contributor to Sydney Morning Herald and Women's Money Magazine Music programmer and producer