NYJO Tutors, Patron & Volunteers
The success of NYJO is attributable to a team effort by all its members: players, parents, friends, tutors, patron, sponsors, arts bodies, volunteers (Friends of NYJO) and audiences. NYJO is a charity (part of NYO) and appreciates the generosity of sponsors including Nottingham-based Clement Pianos, Newark Motor Auctions, Steve Ward of catchyourbus.co.uk and Istvan Mersich. NYJO also values its links with local jazz promoters Jazzsteps, East Midlands Jazz (EMJAZZ) and the education Music Hubs for Nottinghamshire Music Hub and Nottingham City Music Hub.
Phil Smith is a talented musician, performance arts educator and long-time promoter of youth jazz in Nottinghamshire. Before forming NYJO as the jazz branch of the Nottingham Youth Orchestra, Phil was instrumental in two prominent Big Bands called Brassery and Brassroots.
Phil’s professional skills in the performing arts underpins his passion for taking youth bands to perform at the word famous Edinburgh Fringe Festival and to enjoy the mix of festival entertainments. This tradition from Brassery carries through to NYJO. With excellent support from NYJO volunteers, Phil leads a popular annual tour to Edinburgh in August open to members of NYJO1 and NYJO Combo.
Ben Lee is a talented professional trumpeter with his own band as well as performing in a range of other jazz Big Bands and combos. Also is an educator and accomplished arranger whose unique musical arrangements add to NYJO’s unique sound. Ben has also been a long-time collaborator with NYJO’s musical director Phil Smith, including Nottingham youth jazz bands Brassery and Brassroots.
A working professional musician with an infectious enthusiasm for jazz, Ben brings a wealth of experience, not least in the entertainment and performance aspects of group playing.
Tony Kofi - Patron
Left to Right: Ben Lee - Tutor NYJO2 & NYJO Combo (www.bennylee.co.uk), Tony Kofi - NYJO Patron (www.tonykofimusic.com), Phil Smith - NYJO1 & Musical Director, Carl Billson - a founder member & former Chair of volunteer group Friends of NYJO