4 September 2018
Sir Bernard Heinze Memorial Award to Judy Bailey
© Jim Rolon, Australian Composer Polaroid Project
Jazz pianist, composer and educator Judy Bailey has been awarded the 2018 Sir Bernard Heinze Memorial Award. The prestigious award, given annually by the University of Melbourne Conservatorium of Music, was presented last week at a special concert at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, where Bailey is a lecturer.
Judy Bailey has been an important figure in Sydney's music scene, contributing her skills and energy in performance, composition and education since moving to Australia from Auckland, NZ, in 1960. Throughout the 1960s, she performed at the El Rocco Jazz Cellar with Australian jazz legends John Sangster, Don Burrows and Graeme Lyall, and regularly performed on all the major television stations. A sought-after pianist and arranger, she was a member of Tommy Tycho's Orchestra (Channel 7), Don Burrow's Septet (ABC), John Bamford's Orchestra (Channel 9) and Jack Grimsley's Orchestra (Channel 10).
In the 1970s her teaching helped establish the jazz studies program at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music. She was the Musical Director (Jazz) for the Bennelong series at the Sydney Opera House, and travelled to Southeast Asia with her quartet on concert tours organised by Musica Viva. During the 1980s, she was musical director of the Sydney Youth Jazz Ensemble Association, an umbrella organisation for a big band known nowadays as Judy Bailey's Jazz Connection. In recent decades, her focus has shifted increasingly towards teaching and composing.
Judy Bailey's contribution to Australian music has been recognised with several other awards, including the inaugural APRA Award for Jazz Composition and the 2004 Order of Australia Medal for services to music and education. In 2008, she was the first jazz musician to receive the Classical Music Award (later Art Music Award) for Distinguished Services to Australian Music. She was inducted into the Graeme Bell Jazz Hall of Fame in 2014 and, in 2017, was awarded an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Sydney.
Sir Bernard Heinze was one of the major pioneers of orchestral musical life in Australia, and the Ormond Professor of Music at the University of Melbourne for 31 years. Since 1986, in honour of his memory, the Sir Bernard Heinze Memorial Award has been given annually to a person who has made an outstanding contribution to music in Australia. Past recipients include composers Anne Boyd, Carl Vine, Brett Dean and Peter Sculthorpe, pianist Stephen McIntyre, singer Yvonne Kenny, conductors Simone Young and John Hopkins, horn player Barry Tuckwell and violinist Richard Tognetti, among others.
Judy Bailey - AMC profile
'Judy Bailey and the taste of creative freedom' - an interview with Bailey by Jeremy Rose (Resonate 27 October 2015) - read also the companion piece by Rose, 'The unstoppable force that is Judy Bailey'.
Press release by the University of Melbourne (30 August 2018)
© Australian Music Centre (2018) — Permission must be obtained from the AMC if you wish to reproduce this article either online or in print.
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