Skip to main content

BBC Young Jazz Musician 2020

Fri 6 November 2020

Alum Deschanel Gordon and first-year student Kielan Sheard make it to the final

The finalists for BBC Young Jazz Musician 2020 have been announced and Trinity Laban’s Jazz Department is well represented, with alum Deschanel Gordon and first-year student Kielan Sheard both reaching the final.

The biennial competition supports and celebrates the wealth of young talent on the UK jazz scene.

Pianist Deschanel, who graduated from Trinity Laban this summer, commented –

“I am really excited to be playing in the finals at Cadogan Hall and looking forward to working with the amazing Mark and Michael Mondesir.”

Double bassist Kielan said –

“I’m thrilled to be in the finals of BBC Young Jazz Musician 2020. It’s an honour to be playing with and competing against some of the finest young jazz musicians of our generation.”

On joining London’s creative conservatoire this September Kielan added –

“My first term at Trinity Laban has been great! It is an incredible feeling to be able to make music on a regular basis with likeminded people once again. I’m thrilled beyond words to have the opportunity to represent the TL Jazz Department on a national scale and to showcase some of my original compositions.”

Deschanel and Kielan follow in fourth-year Xhosa Cole’s footsteps. Since being crowned BBC Young Jazz Musician 2018, Birmingham saxophonist Xhosa has performed with groups such as the Jazzlines Ensemble and his own quartet: the CharCole Collective. He was named Jazz Newcomer of the Year in the 2019 Parliamentary Jazz Awards.

In a recent BBC press release, Xhosa commented –

“Winning the 2018 Competition proved to me the power of consistency, sincerity and patience. The award has put my career in fast forward and […] been an incredible springboard for me – beyond any of my initial dreams.”

Read Xhosa’s full Q&A and watch his 2018 winning performance.

The final of the BBC Young Jazz Musician 2020 will be broadcast as part of the EFG London Jazz Festival on Sunday 22 November at 19.00 on BBC Four.

Image L-R: Deschanel Gordon (credit Lisa Wormsley); Kielan Sheard (credit Jonathan Trotman)