Calling all artists!

Jazz South – Platform South Showcase at Bristol International Jazz & Blues Festival 2019

Jazz South’s first touring programme - Platform South - is launching with a showcase of selected bands at Bristol Jazz & Blues Festival on 24 March 2019! Taking place in the foyer of Colston Hall, it will be a day-long opportunity for bands to raise their profile in front of the public and jazz promoters, before touring the region.

Tamsin Mendelsohn, recently appointed Jazz South Manager describes Jazz South...

"Jazz South is a brand new 3-year programme to support jazz development across the South West and South East of England (excluding London). Turner Sims Southampton has been awarded funding by Arts Council England to host and lead the project.

It’s an amazing opportunity to work across this wide area where there is fantastic talent and dedication to jazz, all the way from Penzance to Margate, and everywhere in between! We are creating a range of bespoke schemes, to both celebrate what is here and offer support and opportunities for artists, promoters and jazz educators. We will bring people together to share learning, innovative ideas, and energy, to really create a buzz of activity and of course great music!

Platform South is our inaugural and flagship scheme. We wanted a true celebration of artistic talent from across the region, to kick start Jazz South. By offering bands a showcase at the wonderful Bristol Jazz & Blues Festival and ongoing touring support, artists will be able to raise their profile by reaching wider audiences in the South. The scheme also supports promoters who book these bands to include something more ambitious or different in their regular programmes.

We know that artists need support at various stages of their development, so over the three years, masterclasses, creative residencies and mentoring will be offered to younger learners with potential, emerging artists and established artists. Without a strong infrastructure, artists cannot pursue their careers in the South, or even find opportunities leading to national and international careers.

Jazz South will bring promoters, festivals, labels, studios, and jazz educators together for support days, exploring challenges and opportunities for our region. And on this note, jazz is a vibrant sector, so we will be connecting with the work of other national organisations and jazz development bodies in the UK and internationally.

In short, Jazz South is about bespoke support programmes, networking, joining people together and creating new plans to develop jazz practice.

I feel incredibly lucky to be part of the journey, and I’m particularly excited about an element of the programme - Jazz South Commissions. This will bring together venues, promoters, and festivals to offer six new music creation opportunities for chosen artists from the region. This will result in a collection of new jazz writing unique to the South East and South West, celebrating the talent and ambition in the region.

We are a small team behind the scenes, but we want to reach out to make things happen! In the New Year we will be launching a full Jazz South website, and announcing the Platform South bands"

How can you get involved with Jazz South?

Artists – apply to be one of six bands selected for the first edition of Platform South touring scheme, kicking off with a showcase at Bristol Jazz & Blues Festival 2019! Head to for
guidelines and a simple application form. There are no restrictions on jazz/improvisational style or genre and there are no age limitations. There’s still time to meet the deadline of Midnight 14 December
2018. Register on our holding page for updates on further Jazz South opportunities for artists.

Audiences – enjoy a free afternoon at the Platform South Showcase, listening to some of the region’s best talent across jazz & improvisation before they tour. Expect a family friendly performance in Colston Hall
foyer. Check for times and updates at

Promoters – host a Platform South touring date! You’ll be offered financial subsidy from Jazz South to minimise the financial risk of artist fees. See details and register for updates – as well as an invitation to Platform South showcase and promoter reception at – you will also receive updates on upcoming promoter support events.

We want people to join the journey!

For more information about Jazz South, visit and follow them on social media @jazzsouth. For more information on the Bristol International Jazz and Blues Festival (22-24 March 2019) line-up across all venues click here.

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