NYJO Regional Academy

When:  Sunday 21 November 10.30-3.30

Where: North Lakes Primary School, Penrith

The Cumbria NYJO Regional Academy offers a Sunday session each half term lead by NYJO leader Joe Brown and ambassadors (young NYJO leaders). The focus is on improvising, performance and jazz skills and we welcome secondary school students of around Grade 3 standard or above who would like to learn more about jazz and improvising.

New and existing members:

Apply Now

Next sessions:

Online interim session: Sunday 7 November

Academy in Penrith: Sunday 21 November


What is a NYJO Regional Academy?

The National Youth Jazz Orchestra wants to ‘level the playing field for jazz education’ so that young musicians from across the UK have equal opportunities to develop their talents. They have been running a Saturday school in London, the NYJO Academy, for decades and musicians who attend often go on to become professional musicians or study jazz at HE level.  Whilst that’s great, we don’t think it’s fair that students in London & SE have an unfair advantage over those in other areas.

So, the Regional Academies were born. NYJO have teamed up with Cumbria Music Education Hub to offer this locally-run, nationally-supported regular jazz education activity that teaches young people the balance of skills that every jazz musicians needs – reading, improvisation, aural & ensemble skills. As well as working directly with the young musicians, we offer professional development for local music leaders and bring everyone together annually to share the great music making happening across the country. And Cumbria are one of the first Music Hubs to get involved.

Workshop Leader: Joe Browne

Joe is Musical Director of Deal Music and Arts’ jazz programme, in partnership with the National Youth Jazz Orchestra, teaching the rudiments of jazz improvisation and performance, as well as approaches to group composition. He regularly leads workshops for organisations including Trinity Laban Conservatoire, The London Philharmonic Orchestra and The Orchestra of The Age of Enlightenment. He is Musical Director of Arts Without Boundaries – a new charity which delivers music and arts workshops to adults and young people with special educational needs and disabilities – and has led similarly inclusive ensembles for Surrey Arts’ award winning UP! Orchestra and Kent Music’s Orchestra ONE.

Joe pursued postgraduate studies in jazz saxophone from Birmingham Conservatoire and Berklee College of Music.


About NYJO

The National Youth Jazz Orchestra (NYJO) is a registered charity, and the UK’s pre-eminent provider of jazz education.

Its flagship jazz orchestra is a glittering showcase for the UK’s finest young professional jazz musicians, combining a hard-swinging rhythm section and a raft of hugely talented soloists. NYJO has helped launch the careers of many of the country’s most renowned jazz musicians including Guy Barker, Amy Winehouse, Mark Nightingale and Laura Jurd; as well as the leader of the Strictly Come Dancing band Dave Arch, and most of his band members; plus music supervisor for the London Olympics and Paralympics Martin Koch.  Performing around 40 concerts a year both nationally and internationally, recent highlights for the band have included a yearly residency at Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club, major European tours with the German (BuJazzO) and Dutch (NJJO) youth jazz orchestras, and a televised performance at the BBC Proms. NYJO celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2015 and released a critically-acclaimed double-album ‘NYJO FIFTY’.


“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.”  Peter Vacher, Jazzwise