NYJO Learning @ We Out Here

July 19, 2022

In Summer 2022, we were absolutely delighted to receive a donation of tubas and euphoniums from Trevor James. We would like to say a HUGE thank you to Trevor James for offering this opportunity to the young people that we work with. Our young musicians have already benefitted from the generosity of Trevor James, who have donated instruments to NYJO before. Their flutes and baritone saxes have been particularly useful, allowing our players to try out new sounds and significantly expand their skillset. JO musician George Garford has been using one of our Baritones kindly donated by Trevor James, and said:

It’s been a great opportunity to revisit the bari – luckily I’ve been holding onto one of NYJO’s and it’s opened some doors gigs-wise! Likewise, I played my debut soprano sax gig on a NYJO horn back in January at Ronnie Scott’s no less! Access to the NYJO instruments is a massive privilege that I’m very grateful for.

George Garford, NYJO Musician


The tubas featured heavily in our work in Summer 2022… All of the local pupils from our NYJO Jazz Messengers Greenwich Schools’ Tour were invited to attend a big jam session at Woolwich Works on Monday 25 July. Here, they were offered the chance to jam with some NYJO musicians, take part in a taster session led by Byron Wallen, and, most excitingly of all, get their hands on one of our tubas! Young musicians, regardless of whether they were beginners or more experienced players, were able to experiment and explore with this large brass instrument. They had fun doing something unique and original, discovering ‘proper’ sounds that a tuba can make as well as experimenting with its weird and wonderful noises, to create a digital/live soundscape.

This project was led by the brilliant Andy Grappy. Andy is an experienced tuba player and educator. He has performed with, amongst others, the Mike Westbrook Big Band, Hermeto Pascoal, Jazz Warriors, Jazz Jamaica All Stars, Loose Tubes, Grand Union Orchestra, The London Symphony Orchestra, and Abdullah Ibrahim. Andy and the tubas then accompanied NYJO Learning to ‘We Out Here’ festival! This offered us the chance to deliver two further workshops to festival attendees alongside NYJX’s brilliant Bassist Fergus Quill. Keep an eye out to see where NYJO Learning’s tubas land next…

As a Learning department, we were hugely excited by the chance to promote such a unique and special instrument within our community. We’re very grateful to have the opportunity to continue challenging people’s pre-conceptions around what you can do with jazz music, and to expand the opportunities available to our community of musicians.


Lucy-Anne (EP quote)

“Since joining NYJO, I’m so much more confident as a performer. Especially in terms of being able to entertain and keep the crowd engaged with you. It’s really nice to be able to feel that difference.” 

Lucy-Anne, NYJO Emerging Professional (Vocals)

Georgia (EP quote)

“It’s hard to just learn this music in the practice room but being immersed in the music at NYJO is a great environment to really push my playing. ” 

Georgia Ayew, NYJO Emerging Professional (Drums)

Sam Eastmond (MD quote)

"Giving them space to create whatever they wanted, without setting parameters of idiom or style helped them to conceptualise how they could bring these new concepts into their work without scaring them off, or mystifying the process."

Sam Eastmond, NYJO Educator

Jazzwise quote

"NYJO has never been conformist, never hewing to one particular line, never known for fawning replications and very deliberately these days a vehicle for new possibilities."

Jazzwise Magazine

Lydia (EP quote)

"The past year has been an absolutely incredible experience, pushing me way out of my comfort zone into playing with some of the greatest young jazz players of my generation and getting to call them my colleagues and friends has been beyond inspiring, and also an obscene amount of fun!"

Lydia Cochrane, NYJO Emerging Professional (Saxophone)

Anna (Learning national quote)

"[The NYJO residential in Cumbria] helped me to make friends with other young musicians. I enjoy playing a lot more and I’m quite proud of what I’ve accomplished. I feel more confident now. I have learnt different ways of coming up with solid melodies and also a little bit on harmonies. I think it’s been one of the best experiences I’ve ever had."

Anna, NYJO Learning Widening Access participant

Briony (Learning U18s quote)

"I’ve felt very fortunate to be surrounded by amazing musicians, and I think that the environment at NYJO – which has fostered creativity and improvisation – has allowed my confidence and musical ideas to grow."

Briony, NYJO Under 18s

Oscar (Learning U18s quote)

"I think I’ve progressed a lot in my piano-playing. NYJO has helped me to flourish and really enjoy it. I’ve really enjoyed being engrossed in a high level of playing and learning things in a hands-on-way. I also like the diversity of perspectives and abilities of all the players and teachers which enables me to try things I might not normally."

Oscar, NYJO Under 18s

Jennie (Learning U18s quote)

"NYJO has got me listening to more jazz and learning more changes. It has also helped with working as a band. I’ve really enjoyed the free jazz, learning by ear, the people, and the atmosphere."

Jennie, NYJO Under 18s

Leah-Anais (Learning U18s quote)

"I love the people at NYJO. Everyone here is so encouraging and lovely and it makes the experience worthwhile. Though I have fun I’m still learning on the way which makes me feel productive too."

Leah-Anais, NYJO Under 18s

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