Local students run early Brecon Jazz event – with a ‘wow factor!’

Monday 20th June 2022 6:00 am
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NPTC Group of Colleges’ Jazz Ensemble playing at the Brecon Jazz Taster Day
NPTC Group of Colleges’ Jazz Ensemble playing at the Brecon Jazz Taster Day (Matthew Tomlin )

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Last Thursday, a group of inspiring young students at NPTC Group of Colleges successfully ran their own ‘Taster Day’ for the Brecon Jazz Festival.

In collaboration with Festival organisers, Brecon Jazz Club; Brecon Beacons College’s Business and Law students planned and managed the event, which took place outside The Cwtch, the College’s Community Hub.

The event promoted the August programme for this year’s Festival and hosted live music from Neath College’s Jazz Ensemble, who travelled up to Brecon for the occasion.

The ‘Taster Day’ also featured a giant showreel screen from Tantrwm Digital Media, an award-winning Welsh live streaming and video production company. The showreel screen displayed a loop video of the Festival’s history and was also produced by the students.

The event comes after months of planning between Brecon Jazz Club and Brecon Beacons College’s Business, Tourism and Management School. Every year, their BTEC Business and Law students manage an event as part of their course. These students took on the promotion and running of the event with support from staff and the Jazz Club, and played roles in Management, Health & Safety, Marketing and Finance. On the day, they helped to raise funds for the Jazz Festival of over £150, as well as setting up and stewarding for the band and an appreciative audience.

Business and Law student, Lucy Hardy, who raised the most money, said: “I’ve really enjoyed helping to market our event. Being a salesperson to people walking by put me out of my comfort zone, but I think all our class did really well to raise so much for the Festival. Today has been fun.”

The involvement of more young people in the running of Jazz Festival events was a key reason for the Jazz Club proposing the collaboration and was enthusiastically welcomed by staff and students of the College.

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The Jazz Ensemble ready to perform at The Cwtch, Brecon Beacons College

Students of the Business, Management and IT degree are also involved by helping out on the Taster Day and taking on roles to help with the upcoming Festival.

Second-year degree student, Natalie Downton, is now working with the Festival team on a freelance basis to fit around her studies. On Thursday, Natalie took a film crew from the Festival team on a tour of Brecon to interview people ‘vox-pop style.’ They also filmed and interviewed the staff & students on the Taster Day.

Speaking about her role, Natalie said: “I’m really enjoying my work with the Brecon Jazz Festival this year. Touring the town with the film crew was fun, and it was great interviewing lots of new people and seeing the community interact with the Taster Day. Having the band and showreel screen added a bit of ‘wow factor’ to make today special.”

Christine Davies, Head of Business, Tourism & Management at NPTC Group of Colleges College, added: “‘I am delighted with the excellent relationships that have developed between Brecon Jazz organisers, Brecon Beacons College Business staff and their students. This has provided an unequalled experience for the students applying their theoretical skills to a live and prestigious event, with the students always playing the lead role.

“The College would like to thank our Business tutors Robin Flower, Romina West and Michelle Dorise-Turrall for their hard work supporting the students, and Matthew Tomlin from our Marketing team for his assistance. The launch was also supported by the Jazz Ensemble from the Music Department at Neath College and this, together with the support of the Brecon Jazz organisers - Lynne, Roger & Sharon - brought the launch alive outside the Cwtch.”

Brecon Jazz Club said the relationship established between the College and the Festival has been brought alive by the students, their ideas and then delivering it all on the day. Partners Tantrwm Media were fantastic, as was the support from the Audrey Tyler Trust. Everyone really got on board with the collaboration, and the skills and commitment of the Business and the Music students and their tutors really shone brightly.

To see the Brecon Jazz Festival line-up for August, please visit www.BRECONJAZZ.ORG. The main dates will be Sunday, August 7, the weekend of Friday, August 12 – Sunday 14, Saturday, August 20, and Sunday, August 21.

Meanwhile, anyone who has been inspired to study Business by this event, is welcome to apply for Brecon Beacons College by visiting www.nptcgroup.ac.uk.

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