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Jazz Live

Helping everyone in Gloucestershire - children and adults - to learn, develop, share and enjoy music-making...

Gloucestershire Jazz Live

Weekly Jazz Centre every Wednesday from 6pm - 9pm

Bournside School, Warden Hill Road, Cheltenham GL51 3EF

[For directions and rehearsal locations please click on this downloadable link]

Gloucestershire Jazz Live is a jazz centre that hosts county youth and adult jazz groups for local musicians of any jazz experience. We have three bands who typically have c.30 rehearsals each academic year.

  • Gloucestershire Youth Jazz Academy (GYJA)  - Training youth jazz ensemble (Grade 4+)

  • Gloucestershire Youth Jazz Orchestra (GYJO) - Advanced youth jazz ensemble (c. Grade 6+)
  • Jazz2go - Training adult jazz ensemble (Grade 4+)
Young and adult musicians are encouraged and learn how to improve their ensemble playing and improvisational skills in regular rehearsing, practising and performing with musicians of similar ability as well as developing their own individual playing. We expect all of our members to be proactive in demonstrating good reading, sight-reading and improvising skills. Continual development of our members' awareness and understanding of the jazz idiom, chords and scales is also important to our sessions. Please click to download our Jazz Education Policy.

Any adult musicians interested in the Colwell Arts Jazz Ensemble (CAJE) should please visit this weblink. They are also a GM jazz group who rehearse at Bournside school. As a senior level Big Band they also welcome adult musicians keen to rehearse, develop their jazz playing and perform throughout the academic year.

Band rehearsal times:

6.00pm - 7.30pm  GYJA

7.00pm - 9.00pm  GYJO  / Jazz2go

To check where we rehearse please download the directions document at the top of this page (below the Bournside school address).

Member's attendance

An attendance of 8 of every 10 rehearsals and a commitment to our performances is required from every member of every group. Advance notification of absence from rehearsals and performances to your band leader is also vital. GYJA and GYJO members should contact Peter Martin and Jazz2Go members should contact Tessa Frye.

GYJA and GYJO students sitting GCSE and A-Level exams should inform Peter Martin their exam schedule (via their parents' email address) once this is known and suggest solutions for any difficulties. Significant late notice of absence or lapse in attendance will have likely communication from us of how improvement in commitment is expected or of membership not continuing.

Group entry and auditions

Suitability for groups should firstly be based on the grade examination references above, however performing experience and independent ability are vital as well. We encourage that new visiting musicians come along to our trial rehearsals (free of charge) as explained below, before deciding whether to continue and become an official member.  Our GJL expectations for each instrument are available from this gmail mydrive link

GYJA and Jazz2Go both welcome committed musicians from Grade 4 and above with no audition necessary.

Students wishing to join GYJO should ideally be of grade 6 standard and are required to attend our two trial rehearsals, however a separate audition may be requested by our GYJO Director. Our 2017-18 audition criteria will be available for download on this webpage in late March 2017.

In the two trial rehearsals we assess each student's ability to play the music, sight-read and respond to the instructions of the Director.  Improvisation will also be required as demonstration of student's skills.

Our GYJO audition dates for 2016-17 are as follows:

Term 1: Wednesday 28 September 2016 (to join GYJO from September 2016 onwards)

Term 3: Wednesday 25 January and 1 February 2017 (to join GYJO from Febuary 2017 onwards)

Term 5: Wednesday 17 and 24 May (to join GYJO from September 2017 onwards)

Trial Rehearsals

It is important to us that potential new members are given the opportunity to trial our bands. We delegate two specific rehearsals at key points in the academic year for trial rehearsals. These are scheduled for 2016-17 as follows:

Term 1: Wednesday 14 and 21 September 2016

Term 3: Wednesday 4 and 18 January 2017 (there is no rehearsal on 11 January)

Term 5: Wednesday 3 and 10 May 2017

It is important you contact us via email prior to attending a trial rehearsal. We just need to know your name, age, contact details (landline, mobile and frequently checked email address), instrument and experience as a practising and performing jazz musician, plus including any grades you have achieved. It is also useful to know how you discovered our jazz centre. Youth members MUST email from their parent's email address though. We can suggest the most suitable group for you and after two free-of-charge rehearsals, you decide whether you wish to join the group.

For more details about our groups please contact:

Peter Martin (Director of Gloucestershire Jazz Live)


Mobile: 07730 343299

For more details about our membership / administration please contact:

        01452 330300


Opening hours:  Monday to Thursday 08.30 - 16.30 & Friday 08.30 - 16.00 (closed on bank holidays)

Gloucestershire Music is a partner of Make Music Gloucestershire, the county's music education hub.  Follow Gloucestershire Music on facebook and twitter

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