The Sydney Improvised Music Association and the Open Academy regret to announce that the NSW Young Women’s Jazz Workshops will not take place in 2020 due to impacts from COVID-19.

It is the first time since the programs inception in 2001 we’ve missed a year, we are already planning the 2021 program and we will be back next year better than ever. We’re looking forward to sharing 2021 dates as soon as we can. In exciting news, we will soon be announcing winner of the APRA AMCOS emerging composers’ mentorship which will be granted to ayoung female composer to write a new work for a large jazz ensemble (ten pieces) to be premiered at the Sydney International Women’s Jazz Festival 2020.

At the Festival in November we will also be piloting a new look Jazz Workshop to learn more about this opportunity sign up to our newsletter. 

Stay well, keep practicing and we will see you at a gig soon. 

The SIMA team


Who is Eligible?

The course accommodates all levels of jazz experience. If you can read music and play your instrument, you are eligible to apply. Students are divided into different levels based on their instrumental ability and knowledge of jazz (if any).

For students with no knowledge of blues scales or improvisation, the course serves as a fun entryway into the world of jazz. For the more advanced student, the course serves as excellent training preparatory to auditioning for a tertiary jazz program. Active musicians have used the course to become confident soloing and improvising in a supportive and fun learning environment.


The Basics of Auditioning

Bring a piece of your choice that you feel confident playing for us. It can be any genre, and should demonstrate your ability.

2. We’ll have a chat with you to find out how much basic theory you know (e.g. note names, major/minor)

3. We’ll ask you to play some scales. Knowledge of some major and minor scales and the blues scale is very important. If you don’t know any of these yet you will be asked to learn some during the course, so it’s a good idea to get started!

Young Womens Jazz Workshops


About the course

Devised in 2002 by SIMA and Dr Sandy Evans OAM, the Young Women’s Jazz Workshops teaches girls aged 12 and up, how to improvise and get a feel for jazz and blues.

Winner of the APRA Art Music Award for Excellence in Education, our eight-week program accommodates players of all skill levels, from beginner to advanced, regardless of their prior knowledge of jazz.

These workshops provide a fun and supportive environment for young women wanting to develop confidence improvising. They are especially helpful for those preparing to enter jazz at a tertiary level. Our graduates have gone on to win the prestigious Freedman Jazz Fellowship and perform at the Sydney International Women’s Jazz Festival.