Monday 7 December 2015
NJ Advent Calendar - Jazz Degrees (December 7th)
Behind door number 7 is the world of HE jazz education. One of the jewels in the Northern jazz crown is the fact that Leeds had the first jazz course in Europe, with LCoM celebrating its 50th year this year. In the relatively new world of jazz as a whole, this 50 year old institution represents a great achievement in the field. But it's not alone; there are a number places that young musicians can study jazz in the North.
Leeds College of Music
As mentioned above, LCoM was a trailblazer in the field of jazz education and it continues to be one of the most highly regarded centres for jazz studies in the UK. It has an impressive alumni and has seen many well respected jazz musicians come through its doors. The jazz faculty at the college is run by Jamil Sheriff and includes musicians like Sebastian De Krom, Dave Walsh, Steve Fishwick, Richard Iles and Joel Purnell.
Royal Northern College of Music, Manchester
RNCM in Manchester recently launched their Jazz Studies specialism on their BMus course and there's also jazz electives available for those studying other genres of music. They boast an impressive of previous visiting artists - Tim Garland and Chris Potter to name but two. Their Big Band regularly gigs with guests like Nikki Iles and Mike Walker and the staff includes Steve Berry, Julian Arguelles and Steve Waterman.
The Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts doesn't have a specialist jazz degree but its BA Music degree has many staff members that are prominent jazz musicians. Head of Music is Martin Isherwood and among its staff, jazz audiences and musicians will recognise names like Steve Berry, Peter Fairclough, Jim Faulkner and Mike Smith. Over at Liverpool Hope University, jazz is represented too with Liverpool International Jazz Festival's Neil Campbell on staff.
The Jazz, Popular and Commercial Music degree at Sage Gateshead is run in partnership with the University of Sunderland. It has musicians like Paul Edis and Ian Paterson on staff and recent masterclasses have been led by Bill Bruford, Robert Glasper and the Yellowjackets.