Richard Turner Jazz Fund

-Posted on 30.01.2015

The Royal Academy of Music is pleased to announce the recipient of the 2015 ‘Richard Turner Jazz Fund’, the third recipient of this prestigious award.

The Richard Turner jazz fund is to support an undergraduate jazz student annually at the Royal Academy of Music. Set up in memory of the gifted young trumpet player who passed away suddenly in August 2011, the fund is available for a £1,000 award to a deserving young musician, ideally with connections to Leeds and/or Yorkshire. The criteria of awarding is designed to be flexible enough to offer financial assistance in the specific area it is needed for that student; whether that be for a new instrument, or the cost of study/living etc. 

A panel consisting of Richard’s family and colleagues, along with the Academy’s Head of Jazz, Nick Smart, convened in January to decide on the 2015 recipient, following written applications submitted at the end of the previous term.

We are pleased to announce that the third recipient of the award is the talented saxophonist Greg Barker, currently in his third and penultimate year of the Jazz BMus Programme.

Richard’s Mum, Christine, said: ‘Once again I enjoyed reading all of the applications but Greg had a very clear idea of how the fund was going to help him musically. He has already begun his efforts to add a bass clarinet to his collection of instruments, so I hope that this fund will help him to reach his target. Doubling is almost essential for woodwind players both in classical and jazz. I'm pleased the fund will help him in this regard, and that the connection with Yorkshire continues into the third year too! Richard was always very generous with his knowledge and his time for younger players and I know he would be delighted that we are able in some small way, and in his memory, to help the young jazz musicians at the Academy. I am grateful to the Academy and to Richard's friends for all the work they have done, setting up and administering this award.’

Greg Barker – Saxophone

Greg Barker currently studies saxophone on the prestigious jazz course at the Royal Academy of Music.

He previously attended Chetham’s School of Music from the age of 8, during which time he was exposed to a broad spectrum of musical influences. Starting out as a classical clarinettist, Greg discovered a love for jazz after starting the saxophone and being introduced to the art of improvisation by bassist, Steve Berry.

Greg has performed at many prestigious venues throughout the UK and abroad, including the Queen Elizabeth Hall, Purcell Room, The Ivy, Band on the Wall, Charlie Wright’s, Bergen International Festival and La Mortella.

Whilst at the Royal Academy of Music and Chetham’s, Greg has been very lucky to study under prominent artists, such as Iain Dixon, Stan Sulzmann, Martin Speake, Iain Ballamy, James Allsop and Gareth Lochrane. The Academy has also given him the opportunity to perform with John Hollenbeck, Nikki Iles, Gwilym Simcock, Jean Toussaint and Dave Holland.

Previous winners of the Richard Turner Jazz Fund:
2013 Alex Davis, double bass
2014 Tom McCredie, double bass

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