Media Release: Royal Conservatoire of Scotland head of jazz wins prestigious parliamentary award

Tommy Smith

DR. Tommy Smith, head of jazz at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, has been awarded the 2016 Jazz Educator of the Year at the Parliamentary Jazz Awards.

The UK’s premier awards for jazz, the annual event is organised by the All Party Parliamentary Jazz Appreciation Group (APPJAG) at Westminster.

On receiving the Jazz Educator of the Year Award, Tommy Smith said: “I am astounded to be presented with the 2016 Parliamentary Jazz Award for Education at the Houses of Parliament, it is an honour.

“Hats off to all my colleges at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and my youth jazz orchestra for their many years of support.”

Now in its 12th year, the Parliamentary Jazz Awards recognise the very best instrumentalists, educators, recording artists and new comers in the jazz industry.

“Once again, I am extraordinarily proud of the teaching staff here at the RCS.”

Added RCS principal, Jeffrey Sharkey: “For many years, Tommy Smith has led the way in jazz performance and I am delighted that his contribution to education has been recognised in this way.

“Tommy is one of the UK’s finest jazz musicians, whose commitment to teaching the next generation of jazz musicians is unrivalled.

“Students come from all over the world to study with him and I am delighted that he has chosen to teach at RCS. With teaching staff of the calibre of Tommy Smith, it is no surprise that the RCS is ranked sixth in the world for the performing arts education.”

APPJAG currently has over 80 members from the House of Commons and House of Lords across all political parties.

Its aim is to encourage wider and deeper enjoyment of jazz, to increase parliamentarians’ understanding of the jazz industry and issues surrounding it, to promote jazz as a musical form and to raise its profile inside and outside parliament.

Notes to editors:

Royal Conservatoire of Scotland

Ranked sixth in the world for performing arts education, the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland delivers world-class teaching and research with global impact.

The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland is a national and international centre of excellence for the performing arts.

Building on our roots in 1847, as a national academy of music, we are now one of Europe’s most multi-disciplinary performing arts higher education centres offering specialised teaching across music, drama, dance, film and production as well as encouraging trans-disciplinary learning throughout our innovative curriculum.

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