2017/18    |    2019    |    2020


Youth in Music Excellence
Initiative 2020:

A focused workshop in various aspects of jazz &
contemporary music

The Youth in Music Excellence Initiative is a focused workshop in various aspects of jazz and contemporary music presented by top international and local music educators for young developing musicians.
In collaboration with the Toyota US Woordfees, YME is made possible by The Cape Town Music Academy (CTMA), a not for profi t company that seeks to create opportunities for local, established and emerging musicians and related artists in the Western Cape. The initiative is supported by the Western Cape Government’s Department of Cultural Aff airs and Sport and hosted at Paul Roos Gymnasium in Stellenbosch.
The course consists of a series of educational and performance workshops (group lectures, ensemble and individual work) and is designed to develop, shape and elevate the young person’s musical skills and pursuits. YME takes a hands-on, holistic approach which, apart from the music lessons, also includes sessions in psychology, marketing, music production, composition, music business, technology and etiquette. This speaks to the conduct of the musician as an individual and a business. Focus is placed on South African music history and culture, local influences and compositions, in order to help students to understand and nurture their individual voice and playing style.

The initiative is curated by Gavin Minter, Director of Real Wired Music, Schalk Joubert, Music Director of CTMA and Dr Andrew Lilley, Deputy Head of the Department of Music at UCT. They are supported by CTMA’s Programme Manager, Vicky Davis and Operations Manager, Denise Barnes.
International lectures include some of Sweden’s top jazz professionals – Fredrik Norén, lead trumpeter and musical director of the Stockholm Jazz Orchestra, award-winning sax player Fredrik Kronkvist, also from the Stockholm Jazz Orchestra and considered one of Europe`s finest alto sax players and young star drummer, Adam Ross. From Germany, Prof Martin Zenker, lecturer in jazz bass at Munich University and honorary professor in Jazz at the Mongolian State Conservatory.



  • High school learners/teachers: 
  • Students: 
  • Mentors: 
Heading the YMD programme curriculum development is UCT’s South African College of Music (SACM) Associate Professor and Deputy Head
of Department, Dr Andrew Lilley. Lilley is supported by Mandisi Dyantyis, interna􀦞 onal touring vocalist/trumpeter and musical director for the theatre company Isango Ensemble.
Other local lecturers include twice Metro Award winner and UCT Master’s degree graduate in vocal studies cum laude, Nomfundo Xaluva, guitarist par excellence Reza Khota and well known electric bassist, Schalk Joubert. Cape Jazz legend, Hilton Shilder will give a lecture on Cape Jazz and Ghoema. UCT Head of Jazz Studies, Amanda Tiffi n will be giving a special guest lecture on gender-based equality in music. UCT’s Meryl van Noie will teach Music Technology and Gavin Minter will provide insight into the music industry and business. Popular artist Jimmy Nevis will be giving a talk on the South African Pop Industry. The YME lecturers are supported by Stephan Bezuidenhout and Cezarre Strydom from the Paul Roos Gymnasium Music Department. The workshop will culminate in an offi cial closing concert at Paul Roos Gymnasium @ 17:30 on Sunday evening where the participants will perform in ensembles to friends, family and members of the public.
All are welcome and entrance is free.
The top ensemble will form the YME Youth Band under band leader Dr Andrew Lilley. On Sunday 8 March @ 17:00 – 17:30 the YME Band will perform as opening act for Karen Zoid and the Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra in the Karen Zoid 20 Years Pops Concert at the Toyota US Woordfees.
The YME band will continue to perform throughout the year, including performances at the V&A Waterfront Amphitheatre, the Suidooster Festival, the Stellenbosch Triennale and International Jazz Day.