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The 2018 registration is now open. Pre-registration rates are as follows:
$125 Early Bird Professional Rate
Through Oct. 1st
$155 Pre-conference Professional Rate
Through Dec. 13th
$90 Early Bird First Time Attendee Professional Rate
Through Oct. 1st 
$125 First Time Attendee Professional Rate
Through Dec. 13th 

College Student Rate
Through Dec. 13th

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Applications to perform or to propose a clinic at the 68th Annual Midwest Clinic are now available!

Exhibitor Contract Advertiser Contract

Blackburn High School Senior Jazz Orchestra

  • Blackburn High School is a public high school in the eastern suburbs of Melbourne, Victoria. The Blackburn High School Senior Jazz Orchestra (BHSJO) is the most advanced of three big bands in the school. They are all part of a vibrant and diverse program, incorporating 4 wind bands, 3 string orchestras a symphony orchestra and a choir. The Senior Jazz Orchestra enjoys a busy calendar including performances and workshops with musicians and composers from Australia and Overseas. The school is renowned for fostering the talents of our most promising young musicians and a host of alumni from the Jazz Orchestra have gone on to be key educators and performers both locally and internationally. Former members of the group include Shannon Barnett (Trombone - WDR Big Band), Ross Irwin (Trumpet - The Cat Empire), Simon Hosford (Guitar - Men At Work, Virgil Donati, Guy Sebastian), Huw Dann (Trumpet - New Zealand SO) and many others. BHSJO have an exceptional group of students that form the group for 2017. They have blown audiences away throughout the school year, taking out all the first places in major competitions and achieving rave reviews from adjudicators including Vincent Gardiner, Gordon Goodwin, Wycliff Gordon and Lauren Sevian. They played their entire program from memory for the National Stage Band Awards and consistently combine excellence in ensemble playing, a mature understanding of style, dynamic solo playing, powerful expression and an infectious love of music. For the Midwest they are joined by their heroes. Rob McWilliams is a man of many talents. He is as at home on Jazz trumpet as he is directing a 60 piece wind ensemble. He has held substantial roles in jazz education in Australia and USA over the past 25 years and continues his work in jazz education as an Outreach Clinician for Yamaha Australia and also his work as an adjunct professor for the Jazz Music Institute. Tim Davies has been a friend and mentor to many staff and students from Blackburn High School for many years. He has visited the school on a number of occasions and shared his vast experience as one of the busiest writers, arrangers and conductors in Hollywood today. Tim has been a role model for many of the schools talented composition students and he is always willing to share his knowledge and give his time to support jazz and particularly big band education. Tim will feature as a drummer and composer for the BHSJO performance at the Midwest Clinic. Victor Goines is someone the students from BHSJO have watched as lead player with the Jazz at Lincoln Centre Orchestra for a number of years. A formidable player and an artists and composer that is entrenched in firm traditions of the big band era. They performed one of his pieces this year 'Laboratories of Ideas' and are delighted to have worked with Victor in New York at the Lincoln Centre and then perform with him at the Midwest Clinic as a featured artist on his own composition.
  • 12/21/2017 12:00 PM - 01:00 PM
  • Blackburn High School Senior Jazz Orchestra
  • Andy O'Connell
  • Andy O’Connell is a well-respected educator and experienced performer. For nearly 20 years he has directed the award winning Blackburn High School Senior Stage Band and has achieved international recognition for the program, involving invitational guest performances in the USA on two occasions, for the International Association of Jazz Educators (IAJE) and The Monterey School Jazz Festival. In 2012 Andy co-ordinated and directed a combined ensemble of some of Melbourne’s finest young jazz musicians for Channel Seven’s ‘Good Friday Appeal’. They performed as the house band throughout the telecast and also backed young jazz singer Liam Burrows. Andy’s educational focus is heavily influenced by his own career as a performer and composer. For many years, Andy has led the well-known ‘Old School’ Funk/ Disco band ‘Reverend Funk’. Incorporating key industry players, he has been musical director of this group and has subsequently recorded and performed with artists including Vika and Linda Bull, Ella Thompson, Matt Hetherington and Tanya Doko. Concurrently, Andy maintains a firm footing in the big band genre. He currently leads the band ‘Swing Sensation’, harking back to the sounds of the 30’s and 40’s and featuring some of Melbourne’s outstanding voices of Bob Valentine, Marty Fields and Nina Ferro. Along with performances with The Daryl Mackenzie Big Band, Tim Davies Australian Big Band, The Steve Sedergreen ‘Points in Time’ band, lead alto saxophone with the Tom Burlinson ‘Frank Sinatra Show’ and recording sessions in a wide variety of genres, Andy maintains a busy performance schedule in addition to his ongoing role as a leading jazz educator.