Since its inception in the early 70s, the Sydney Conservatorium Jazz Orchestra has formed an alumni that features many of the leading lights in Australian Jazz. Comprising 5 saxophones, 4 trombones, 4 trumpets, guitar, piano, bass and drums, the CJO features many of Sydney’s finest young improvisers.
“Over the past 5 years, the standard of Jazz Orchestral studies has developed rapidly with an emphasis on collaborating with, and performing the music of leading international composers such as Bob Brookmeyer, Maria Schneider, Bert Joris, Florian Ross, Jim McNeely, Darcy James Argue, Julian Arguelles and Dick Oatts to expose the students to the leading music and contemporary techniques required to perform Jazz Orchestral music at its highest level. These amazing young players have risen to the challenge on every level, and we aim to continue impressing audiences whenever we perform, with a level of sophistication normally reserved for professional Jazz”. The orchestra’s debut national tour in 2013 with Belgian based super composer, Bert Joris, was a tour de force.
Conservatorium Jazz Orchestra Artistic Director David Theak has been a tireless advocate for large ensemble jazz in Australia through his work with the Jazzgroove Mothership Orchestra, as a teacher at the Sydney Conservatorium Jazz studies program, convenor of the National Big Band Composition Competition and as guest artist and artistic advisor with the West Australian Youth Jazz Orchestra. Theak created the ‘Jazzgroove Mothership Orchestra’ as a young member of Sydneys music scene and is now mentor to scores of emerging musicians nationally and internationally.
Sydney Conservatorium Jazz Orchestra 2015
James Muller - guest guitar soloist
David Theak - conductor
Felix Lalanne – auxiliary guitar
David Allen – piano
Nick Henderson – contrabass
Oliver Nelson – drums
Sam Gill, Nishcal Manjanuth, Evan Harris, Michael Avgenicos, Chris O’Dea – saxes
Ellie Shearer, Matt O’Brien, Raygun Kang, Des Cannings - bones
James Power, Kyle Eardley, Joe Lisk, Tom Avgenicos, Nick calligeros – trumpets