Jazz Camp for Girls

Posted by on Oct 11, 2018 in Artists, Home Page, Jazz North News, News | 10 Comments
Jazz Camp for Girls

UPDATE January 2019: see Jazz Camp for Girls 2019

Jazz North to deliver the pioneering Jazz Camp for Girls project in 2019 in partnership with seven partner organisations thanks to a grant from Ronnie Scott’s Charity Foundation

Jazz North has been awarded a grant of £5,130 from Ronnie Scott’s Charity Foundation to develop and deliver Jazz Camp for Girls, a series of one-day intensive workshops for girls aged 9 -13 years old that aims to address the gender imbalance in jazz.

Inspired by the success of a similar project created and led by JazzDanmark and Copenhagen Jazz Festival, Jazz Camp for Girls is the only initiative of its kind in the UK. Led by professional musicians, six camps will take place on the same day in locations across the north of England: Manchester, Sheffield, Penrith, Wakefield and Rotherham. The camps will give girls their first experience of improvised music and develop their confidence in their personal musicality. With an emphasis on improvisation and finding their own voice, there will be minimal use of sheet music and within these education spaces dedicated to girls, participants will work together to create good experiences with instrumental music. Jazz Camp for Girls will provide these creative spaces where girls can flourish under the mentorship of positive female role models.

Welcoming the grant, Lesley Jackson, Executive Director of Jazz North says:

“We are really excited to be able to deliver this game changing project which wouldn’t have been possible without the generous support from Ronnie Scott’s Charity Foundation.

The idea grew from a session at our jazz education conference that used personal experiences to highlight the barriers that girls face when accessing creative music education. Our long-term ambition is to grow the project to a residential course in more locations, but this pilot project is a valuable stepping stone to that ambition providing the opportunity to evaluate the benefits, engage more partners and gain support for a long-term initiative.”

Lesley emphasises the need for these camps just for girls as it is important to create space where girls can flourish. She continues,

“We are working towards a world where women only events and programmes don’t need to take place anymore and we will support women only events until there is change. There is a gender imbalance in jazz and we have devised the Jazz Camp for Girls programme to address this. Through our initial research, we discovered there is a need for programmes like this as we strive for gender equality.”

Jazz Camp for Girls aims to provide a supportive atmosphere in which young female musicians can hone their musical skills. Friendships among young female musicians will be encouraged and enhancing the self-esteem and confidence of participants will be fostered. The camps will aim to increase their skills and appreciation in the practice of improvisation and creative music and raise their aspirations through positive role models and peer support.

Partners on the project include: Blue Jam Arts, Huddersfield University and Music Education Hubs in Lancashire, Manchester, Rotherham, Sheffield and Wakefield, as well as Trafford Music.

JazzDanmark Director Eva Frost talking about Jazz Camp for Girls.

Simon Cooke, trustee of Ronnie Scotts Charity Foundation said:

“We’re delighted to be supporting Jazz North’s Jazz Camp for Girls. The Jazz Camp is an excellent scheme which will help support and nurture the talent of young female jazz musicians in the north of England and we’re proud to be involved in helping the project come to life.”


  1. Sylvie Heath
    13 October, 2018

    To whom this may concern,

    I have just seen Jazz Camp for Girls advertised on Facebook, I think this is brilliant!

    I would love to get involved and support this. Do you have any teacher/tutor positions for the Jazz Camp?

    I am a jazz musician and play a lot of improvised music, I also compose and teach. I have vast teaching experience in many areas; previously head of music in a secondary school in the North East, currently I work as a peripatetic teacher privately and for Cumbria Music Service and Lancashire Music service. I am also doing an MA in Music Performance at Salford University.

    I look forward to hearing from you.

    Many thanks


    • 14 October, 2018

      Hi Sylvie – thanks for your positive response to the project! The individual partners will be taking care of tutor recruitment. If you would like to get in touch via the contact form and include your email address we’ll pass on to the project leader who can share with the partners.

    • 16 January, 2019

      Hi Sylvie – things are now moving on with the project. I suggest you get in touch with our project leader Helena Summerfield from the contact link on https://www.jazznorth.org/jazz-camp-for-girls-2019/

  2. Handan Acabay
    14 October, 2018

    My 9 year old trumpet playing daughter Zola would love the opportunity to be part of this amazing project.
    Thanks heaps
    Handan Acabay

    • 14 October, 2018

      Hi Handan,

      Thanks for your positive response – please get in touch via the contact form letting us know which area is closest to your home and our project leader will pass on to the partner organisations nearest to you in case this is a chance to invite Zola to take part.

    • 16 January, 2019

      Hi Handan – we now have a new page for Jazz Camp for Girls with a map of venue locations. From their you can send a message to our project leader Helena Summerfield. https://www.jazznorth.org/jazz-camp-for-girls-2019/

  3. Wayne Barber
    19 October, 2018


    I’d be interested in more information to potentially get my 9 yo daughter involved she has been playing drums for a year now.

    Kind Regards


  4. Cristina Cerulli
    31 October, 2018

    Dear Jazz North,
    my daugher Ella, 11, somehow ended up being the ‘face’ of your blog post about Jazz Camp for Girls (playing drums). She plays piano (grade 2) and violin (grade 3) and would be interested in a camp in Sheffield. My other daughter, cellist (preparing grade 7) would probably be interested too.
    I am looking forwards to hearing more details.
    Best wishes,

  5. natalie mellonie
    1 November, 2018

    My 9 year old would be interested in the Lancaster camp if I could have details please.This sounds an amazing opportunity.

  6. Helen Bottle
    1 November, 2018

    Hi. My daughter is 10 and plays the cornet. Can I sign her up for one of your jazz workshops? The easiest place to get her to would be Lancaster. Helen


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