Our Mission and related Activities

The National Youth Jazz Collective [NYJC] supports the creative & educational needs of the young jazz musician, focusing on small group improvisation within a pathway of progression from beginners to young professionals.
We do this by
   • Promoting an age-appropriate methodology for jazz education that fosters the skills needed for playing jazz in small groups;
   • Running a weeklong National Youth Jazz Summer School, open to all-comers through a national audition tour of regional centres, plus a week-long feeder course for auditionees with more limited jazz knowledge and experience;
   • Supporting a rolling programme of regional activities for young jazz musicians across England to develop their skills, creativity and passion for improvised music;
   • Passing on best practice in education for musicianship through skill development of national and regional music leaders;
   • Networking alumni members to stimulate their collective endeavors as young adults and increase the profile of jazz as a valuable musical expression for young people;
   • Encouraging a diverse and broad-ranging repertoire of musical works that champions the often-forgotten eclectic influences of UK jazz’s past century;
   • Engaging in culturally eclectic collaborative projects where young people and organisations share and develop their capabilities in improvisation and composition;
   • Conducting gender focused work to encourage more female instrumentalists to become leading exponents of the jazz idiom
   • Offering online services including resources for teaching and learning, exemplary youth jazz performances, signposting information, research and networking.
   • Promoting young jazz performers in a broad range of venues (not just music) maximizing NYJCs reach to a wider participatory and listening audience.
   • Supporting a dedicated social media network.


Management & Staff

Founder and Artistic Director: Issie Barratt
Executive Director: Andy Thornton

Programme Manager: Ron Warshow
Finance Manager: Charity Accounting Services
Video and online resources producer: Darren Michael
Website Manager: Jamie Gibbons


Dave Holland

Vice Presidents

Michael Connarty
John Fordham
Julian Joseph
Helen Mayhew

Sir Karl Jenkins

Bob Blizzard

Board of Trustees

Mike Gibbons (Chair)

Martin Kemp
Lew Hodges
James Joseph
Andrew Jermey Boys
Julia Payne

Ruth Herbert

Guy Fletcher