RIP Phil Broadhurst

Phil Broadhurst at WJC 21 June 2018

It is with sadness that we acknowledge the passing of Phil Broadhurst on Friday 24 April 2020.

Phil was one of New Zealand’s leading jazz artists. He was a well-known pianist, composer, educator and presenter Art Of Jazz on Radio New Zealand Concert since 1991. He was the head of Jazz Studies at the New Zealand School of Music (Massey University, Albany) from 2000- 2016, and a three-time winner of the Jazz Record Of The Year award, and became the first jazz musician to be awarded the MNZM for services to Jazz in 2001.

Our condolences to his partner Julie Mason and family.


It is with regret to advise that due to COVID-19 we must cancel all upcoming concerts. Rest assured that we will be keeping a close eye on COVID-19 announcements and hope to resume our 2020 program as soon as possible!

In the meantime stay strong, stay positive and most importantly stay healthy.

Mark Lockett
WJC Artistic Director

Michael Eckroth & Alda Rezende Quartet

Michael Eckroth is one of the most active pianists of the New York scene, equally at home in jazz and Latin-American music forms. In Wellington specially for this concert for the WJC he will perform some of his original compositions. In partnership with acclaimed singer Alda Rezende he will play new arrangements that will inject new life to a clever repertoire of obscure Latin American classics.

Michael Eckroth, pianist and keyboardist, is a superb musician who has worked extensively with musicians such as John Scofield (New Morning Concert DVD), Ron McClure, Eliot Zigmund and Paul McCandless.

He recently arranged and recorded an album in Cuba with Pepito Gomez and Orquesta Akokan (Daptone Records) which has received rave reviews on outlets like NPR and recently gained a Grammy nomination in the tropical category. Recently having completed a PhD at NYU, Michael currently teaches jazz piano at Dartmouth College.

As co-leader and collaborator with a number of New York-based groups (La Voz De Tres with Jason Ennis and Natalia Bernal being one of the most long-standing), Michael has performed in festivals and venues all over the United States, Latin America, Europe and the world. He is also an avid composer and recording artist with several of his own and collaborative albums to his name within the jazz and Latin jazz genres.

Brazilian born Alda Rezende made Wellington her home 16 years ago where she is a veteran of the local music scene, having headlined some of the most important music festivals in New Zealand and Australia, such as Wellington International Jazz Festival, Adelaide Cabaret Festival, Auckland Arts Festival. As well as often touring her native Brazil where she has performed with heavy-weight names of Brazilian music such as Joao Bosco, Elza Soares and many others.

Alda lends her unique voice to interpret music that promotes a bridge between the traditional and the contemporary forms of Latin music. Being a music researcher and world music radio D.J., Alda’s repertoire goes far beyond the obvious, paying respect to the past and anticipating new tendencies for the future. Spicing intricate rhythms with her samba-infused soul and the originality of her voice, this singer will enchant both connoisseurs of Brazilian rhythms, jazz lovers and everyone interested in good music.

Michael Eckroth & Alda Rezende Quartet
Michael Eckroth (p), Alda Rezende (v), John Rae (d), Noel Clayton (g), Patrick Bleakley (b).
Date: Tue 17 Mar 2020, 8pm
Venue: The Third Eye, Upstairs at 30 Arthur St. Te Aro
Price: General $15, WJC members and Students with ID $10

Simona Smirnova: Bird Language

As part of the annual tour in Australia and New Zealand, Wellington Jazz Cooperative is pleased to welcome back Simona Smirnova. Lithuanian born jazz vocalist, composer and zitherist based in New York City, Simona’s style is known for her unique theatrical flavour, genre-bending, and virtuosic vocal improvisation. Her current show ‘Bird Language’ blends bird sounds and uncanny vocal techniques into one intriguing performance. Her new concert explores an eclectic mix of ethnic scales, zither sounds, and improvisation colliding with the artist’s strong foundation in jazz and rock.

A 2015 graduate of the prestigious Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA, Simona does the impossible and is now a full-time NYC musician. In NYC she performs with her quartet in local jazz venues, as well as touring in different parts of the world, such as Australia, New Zealand and Europe. 

Simona Mins
Simona Smirnova (v), Leonardo Coghini (p), Seth Boy (b), Mark Lockett (d)
Date: Tue 5 Mar 2020, 8pm
Venue: The Third Eye, Upstairs at 30 Arthur St. Te Aro
Price: General $20, WJC members and Students with ID $15

Hayden Chisholm and Unwind

Hayden Chisholm might be a native of Taranaki, but these days lives in Europe where he has made his home for more than 25 years. Since moving to Germany in 1993 to study at the Cologne College of Music, he has performed his music in Europe, Asia, the Americas, Africa and of course – when the chance arises – around Aotearoa. That opportunity has arisen again this summer when he will perform around New Zealand with his local group Unwind. Joined by New Zealand music legends Paul Dyne (bassist with Malcolm McNeill, Rodger Fox, Sustenance) and Julien Dyne (drums with Fat Freddy’s Drop, Ladi6) along with pianist/composer Norman Meehan, Hayden will be performing original music that might know about jazz, but also dances with Indian raga, chamber music, and folk traditions.

Although he has purposely kept a low profile in the last few years, preferring to spend time with his family in Belgrade where he now lives, he has built a reputation as one of the most individual and outstanding voices on his instrument worldwide and has gathered a collection of important prizes and accolades. He has also been active as a producer and festival director and worked hard in promoting young talent throughout Europe. His yearly master classes in Greece and Germany have come to attract some of the world’s best young saxophone talents from across the globe.

While Hayden may have lived away from Aotearoa for a long while, he still feels his music is connected to the country. He said ‘A good half of my life I have been based in Europe, but I still feel very much like a New Zealander. You carry that with you wherever you go. I think the strongest underlying current you take with you, as a New Zealander, is the feeling of the land you get growing up here: being bare-foot on the grass; the colours and the smells. That connection to the land is a very powerful thing, and while that will not necessarily pull you back here, it will define you in a strong way.’

Hayden Chisholm and Unwind
Paul Dyne (b), Julien Dyne (d), Norman Meehan (p), Hayden Chisholm (t)
Date: Tue 20 Feb 2020, 8pm
Venue: The Third Eye, Upstairs at 30 Arthur St. Te Aro
Price: General $15, WJC members and Students with ID $10