From the Media Release
The Music Council of Australia and Freedman Foundation are delighted to announce Marc Hannaford as the winner of the 2013 MCA/Freedman Fellowship for Jazz, following a shoot out between four of the hottest jazz acts in Australia.
Melbourne pianist Marc Hannaford is known as one of the most exciting improvising pianists in Australia. His multi-faceted and energetic music combines elements of the American and Australian jazz traditions, South Indian classical music and flamenco. Marc has released four CDs under his own name and his work has been recognised with many awards and nominations.
Marc intends to use the fellowship prize money to rehearse, record and perform in New York with trumpeter Scott Tinkler (Aus), saxophonist Ellery Eskelin (USA) and drummer Tom Rainery (USA). The quartet will spend one day developing common ground for improvisation, two days recording and will give one performance.
The judges for 2013 are three of Australia’s most respected jazz musicians: Andrew Robson, Tim Firth and Alister Spence. The judges commented, “What a wonderful night of music! A diverse and eclectic display of great talent and musicality. Australia continues to enable strong individual voices to emerge. Long may it continue. The judges were unanimous in awarding the Freedman Jazz Fellowship to Marc Hannaford. His virtuosity, musicality and artistic concept were integrated in a captivating performance.”
Richard Letts, of the MCA said, “This is the eleventh award of a Freedman Jazz Fellowship. The previous ten winners make an honour roll of Australian jazz. This year’s winner, Marc Hannaford, is extraordinary. I have never heard jazz like Marc’s – the intricate rhythms are mesmerising, the improvisation continually surprises, the blend of heritage and innovation full of wit and amazement. This is a true musical mind finding its own new path.
The MCA/Freedman Jazz Fellowship awards the winner with a $15,000 cash prize. The three other finalists for 2013 were Rajiv Jayaweera, Aaron Flower and Jeremy Rose.
The purpose of the Fellowship is to assist performers of maximum 35 years of age to further their careers and enhance their abilities as a jazz artist. Nominees propose a specific project to pursue their career objectives, either overseas or within Australia. The judging process involves a public concert at the Sydney Opera House as well as an assessment of their proposed projects.
Established in 1998 by Laurence and Kathy Freedman, the Freedman Foundation also supports visual artists, Australian youth projects, and scientific and medical research. The Music Council of Australia is a national music organisation representing the entire breadth of music in Australia.
About the finalists
Marc Hannaford (Piano, Melbourne) is known as one of the exciting improvising pianists in Australia. His multi-faceted and energetic music combines elements of the American and Australian jazz traditions, South Indian classical music and Flamenco. Marc has released four CDs under his own name and his work has been recognised with awards and nominations.
Rajiv Jayaweera (Drummer, New York based) was born in London of Sri Lankan heritage but grew up in Melbourne. He moved to New York in 2011 to do his Masters in Jazz Studies where he studied with Professor John Riley. He regularly performs at Birdland Jazz Club with The Louis Armstrong Centennial Band and has travelled widely performing at jazz festivals and playing with musicians such as Cyrille Aimee, the Kenny Werner Trio, Gilad Hekselman and Chris Cheek.
Aaron Flower (Guitar, Sydney) is a regular on the Sydney music scene and has performed with jazz greats both here and overseas and in 2007 he won the National Jazz Guitar Award. He plays and records with bands including his own, BAZ, whose last album was shortlisted for the Jazz Bell Award in 2011. That same year he started Yum Yum Tree Records a collective and label which aims to promote music from 2003 – 2010.
Jeremy Rose (Saxophone, Sydney) has played the saxophone at major festivals around Australia, as well as performances in Japan, Norway and Canada. He has studied with top artists around the world and released nine albums of original music with his various projects. He is becoming increasingly known as a composer for ensembles such as Ku-ring-gai Philharmonic, Sirens Big Band and Compass Quartet.
Read more about the Freedman Fellowships on the MCA website >