Monash success at the Australian Jazz Bell Awards

Screen Shot 2014-05-04 at 10.26.21 PMThe Sir Zelman Cowen School of Music had great success at  the Australian Bell Awards (annual music awards for jazz music in Australia) held at the Regent Theatre – Monash University were winners in two categories:

Best Young Jazz Artist

Best Australian Contemporary ‘Avant-garde’ Jazz Album 

Hosted by journalist Tracey Curro, the night’s event began with speeches from Jazz Bell Awardschairman Albert Dadon AM, federal Attorney-General The Honorable George Brandis, and DorothyBell, the wife of late, great jazz pioneer Graeme Bell AO, MBE.

Current PhD student Joseph O’Conner (piano) from the Sir Zelman Cowen School of Music received top honours for the prestigious Young Jazz Artist award. Joseph was one of 3 nominees who were selected from young musicians nation-wide. Significantly, all 3 nominations were Monash alumni or are currently studying at Monash including: Daniel Sheehan (BMus/honours) and Sam Pankhurst (BMus).

The MAE (Monash Art Ensemble) directed by Professor Paul Grabowsky, claimed the award for the Best Australian Contemporary ‘Avant-garde’ Jazz Album award. This ensemble features members of the Australian Art Orchestra (AAO), students and staff from the Sir Zelman Cowen School of Music with all compositions (for this CD) composed by Professor Grabowsky. The School of Music’s vision was to create an ensemble that plays music of the 21st century – music that reinforces the importance of practice-based research, has impact and justifies the view that Monash University is a leader in this field.

“Universities are places of excellence where ‘cutting-edge’ research takes place. This CD is an exemplar of what is music in the 21st century, and success at the Australian Bell Awards is a testament that music  produced at The Sir Zelman Cowen School of Music is indeed a leader of practice-based research in this country and possibly the world”. – Associate Professor Robert Burke

Staff who contributed to this success include:

Professor Paul Grabowsky, Head of Music – Associate Professor Rob Burke, Professor Tony Gould, Paul Williamson and Jordan Murray (lecturers in Jazz).

(The MAE is supported by the Vizard Foundation)