Thu 5 May 2011

Judges in this year’s prestigious Australian Jazz Bell Awards have been overwhelmed by both the high calibre and quantity of entries across all categories and today announce the nominations for the 2011 awards, which features some of the brightest talent in the Australian jazz scene.

The winners of the Australian Jazz Bell Awards 2011will be announced at a glittering event hosted by Tracey Curro on May 5 in Melbourne’s spectacular Regent Plaza Ballroom.

The coveted Australian Jazz Bell Awards - better known as ‘The Bells’ – honour one of the greats of Australian jazz – Graeme Bell MBE AO and was established to recognise and encourage excellence in the performance, recording and presentation of jazz in Australia.

A new category has been added to ‘The Bells’ this year - Best Australian Jazz Blend Album.

This award was added to promote jazz artists whose focus is outside both the traditional form of jazz and the experimental sounds of contemporary. It is open to artists who released an album in 2010 that combines jazz with another genre such as funk, soul, pop, latin.

The 2011 judging panel has also been increased to nine judges, experts in the field from Australia and overseas. The panel comprises Rob Burke, Albert Dadon, Laurence Donohue-Greene, Adrian Jackson, Martin Jackson, Gerry Koster, Jenny Game-Lapota, Aaron Searle and Michael Tortoni.

Albert Dadon AM, Chairman of the Australian Jazz Awards, says: ‘This year marks a renewal of the Jazz Bell Awards. Jazz in Australia is on the way to becoming mainstream and our new format will ensure that the full variety of Jazz artists can be recognised.’’

Two new sponsors – Monash University and Palace Cinemas – have been added to the generous list of supporters of the 2011 awards and we’re also pleased to introduce ABC Jazz as our media partner for the event.

Check out for nominees.