Help Musicians re-opens £10,000 fund for promising emerging jazz performers

Help Musicians has opened the 2019 application process for a £10,000 jazz fund, the renowned Peter Whittingham Jazz Award.

Open to jazz musicians from all walks of life, the Peter Whittingham Jazz Award seeks out the most exciting and innovative emerging jazz artists who have the creativity, ambition and commitment to develop a sustainable career in jazz. As part of Help Musicians’ commitment to accessibility, the charity encourages applications from those who are currently underrepresented in jazz such as women, people with disabilities and individuals from black, Asian, and minority ethnic backgrounds.

Jazz musicians, either solo or in groups of up to eight, who are at a tipping point in their career, are invited to apply via the website here by Monday October 14. Auditions will be held in November 2019, and an independent panel of jazz experts, along with representatives of Peter Whittingham’s family, will select awardees for the fund.

Now in its 29th year, The Peter Whittingham Jazz Award offers the winner £5,000 to undertake a creative project of their choice, that will support their creative and professional development. The award can fund recording, filming, touring, performances, mentoring, collaboration and promotion. A further £5,000 is available for up to three rising talents through The Peter Whittingham Jazz Development Awards.

An expert in survival medicine, Peter Whittingham was also a pianist who enjoyed the music of Gershwin, Porter, Sondheim, Bernstein, Shearing and Peterson. After his death in 1987, his family set up this award in his memory and their connection with the Award continues. Over the past 29 years, the Award has been given to many now-leading jazz musicians, including Help Musicians ambassador Soweto Kinch, Errollyn Wallen MBE, Dave O’Higgins, Gwilym Simcock and Roller Trio.

Lucy Bampton, Head of Creative Programme, Help Musicians, said: “Our vibrant jazz scene continues to prove itself as one of the most exciting and refreshing in the world, with performers representing the rich and diverse make-up of the UK. Help Musicians, along with the family of Peter Whittingham, are incredibly proud to be able to be part of helping these thrilling artists continue to thrive in what is already a promising landscape. We have seen some amazing talent develop through this Award and we are certain this year will be no different.”

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