A music academy and charity has received funding to teach eight talented young musicians in a jazz programme.
World Heart Beat Music Academy, based in Wandsworth provides music tuition and performance opportunities for 350 young people each year outside of school hours.
Now they have been awarded funding from ZEDRA, a global active wealth, corporate and fund solutions specialist, which will see eight students receive tuition from exceptional musicians, attend masterclasses from visiting artists, play in regular combo and ensemble sessions, perform in a wide variety of venue. One of the students to receive funding, Jaidan Regis, aged 16 plays the drums.
He said: “When I’m swinging and fully in the moment I’m filled with happiness.
“The fact you can play such an original, pure form of music sets you apart from other musicians.
“ZEDRA, thank you so much for giving me this opportunity of a scholarship. I’m really looking forward to it and to mastering my craft.”
Isola MacPherson, also aged 16 plays bass, she said: “I love jazz, and music in general.
“Everyone has an outlet that works for them but jazz is something that helps me, and makes me feel good.”
World Heart Beat’s jazz programmes have seen top-musicians such as Tony Kofi and Byron Wallen teaching at the academy, and students going on top conservatoires in the UK and abroad.
Another student, 16-year-old Nathan Dawkins who plays alto sax said: “I first heard jazz in Year 4 and I thought wow, this is something I can really get into. It feels good.
“I will not let it go to waste and I will pursue my musical career a lot further and hopefully become one of the all-time greats.”
World Heart Beat said their mission is to provide opportunities for all, with an “open door” approach that welcomes any young person interested in learning music.
This commitment sees them providing bursaries and free instruments to more than half of the students that come through their door.
“We are delighted to have been selected as ZEDRA’s first international charity partner,” said Sahana Gero, founder and artistic director of World Heart Beat Academy.
“Which will make a huge difference to us and our students. At World Heart Beat, we nurture young people’s love and appreciation of jazz.
“This sponsorship will mean we can provide intensive talent development for passionate, gifted young people, who will really benefit.
“Offering a wide range of opportunities for young musicians, as well as opening our new education centre and live music venue in Embassy Gardens on London’s South Bank.”