Youth Jazz Fest wraps up with concert

The Dunedin Youth Jazz Orchestra from left Ollie Meikle (18) Kevin Chen (18) and Sam Meikle (16)...
The Dunedin Youth Jazz Orchestra from left Ollie Meikle (18) Kevin Chen (18) and Sam Meikle (16) playing at the Otago Boys High School auditorium on Saturday night.PHOTO PETER MCINTOSH
The first Dunedin Youth Jazz Festival showcase concert, which wrapped up the toe-tapping festival on Saturday night, was an "amazing" success, an organiser says.

The concert involved performances from the Dunedin Youth Jazz Orchestra and winners and runners-up from the competition, held on Friday.

About 70 young musicians from seven schools around Dunedin took to the stage during the festival.

The concert featured about 40 performers from the All Blues, from Otago Boys' and Otago Girls' High Schools, the Big Bad Band and the Itty Bitty Small Band from Logan Park High School, and the Nick Tipping Trio, with special guests.

Dunedin Youth Jazz Orchestra Trust chairman Bill Martin said all performers played to an "extremely high level" and the festival and concert went "seamlessly well".

It was the second year the festival had been run, and the first time the concert had been held.

The same format would be repeated next year, he said.

He hoped schools from the wider Otago area would get involved in the festival next year. Schools from outside Dunedin had been invited, but none took up the invitation this year.

The Itty Bitty Small Band was a particular highlight and "really stood out", Mr Martin said.

Adjudicator at the festival was Nick Tipping, presenter of RNZ jazz programme Inside Out, who performed with Mr Martin and Carl Woodward in the final event of the concert.

The jazz orchestra itself is made up of about 16 members under the age of 25, including high school pupils and students.

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