A milestone was reached on the October long weekend when the York Music Festival incorporating the 25th annual jazz festival was held.

One of the festival committee’s founding members, Roy Burton, performed again this year with his ensemble, the Corner House Jazz Band.

The event will take a new direction next year when this historic musical event will be extended even further.

This year’s festival committee not only staged this show but had a busy calendar for 2007 starting in March with the Meatloaf Tribute Show and concluding with the Bachelors concert on October 23.

The wealth of knowledge and contacts in jazz circles held by Harold and Jan Rye contributed to the success of the jazz weekend. Harold estimated that between 8000 and 10,000 people attended.

The Saturday night cabaret was close to a full house when the crowd was entertained by the seven piece, Windy City Jazzmen, led by maestro Brian Copping and assisted by the lovely Masina who added a feminine touch to vocals.

The Sunday night cabaret was a departure from jazz when the rock and roll combo, the Yeomen, led by front man, Terry Harris, delivered its own brand of 50’s and 60’s music. The use of drapes to dampen the over active town hall acoustics seemed to solve the problems normally encountered.

Entertainment during the day in the town hall consisted of Denise Dale, the Stevedores, Corner House Jazz Band and the Chisholm and Mercy College bands.

The gospel service at St Patrick’s Church on the Sunday was well received with a choir and band led by Geoff Scarfe. The church received a donation for providing the venue.

Peace Park provided a natural arena for more than 40 market stalls. Entertainment in the park included the Peppermint Jazz Trio, the Yeomen, Mercy and Chisholm Colleges and local country music trio, Bridging the Gap.

Numerous business houses sponsored their own entertainment in other locations.

Thanks go to the businesses that contributed to the success of the event. They included Frank Dols for sound in Peace Park, Ken Emberson for the lighting and modular staging along with KW Audio with sound  in the town hall, the York Junior Cricket Club for traffic control and the York Scout Group for providing tea, coffee, water and cakes in the lesser hall.

As the dust settles, the town can be content that yet another festival has attracted a large number of visitors.

Leigh Carmichael


Webpage photograph:

  • Local trio, Bridging the Gap, (L-R) Jimmy Nunn, Slim Pickings and Emma Leigh,  were popular entertainers in Peace Park.




Photographs (from top)

  • Restaurants and cafes in the main street benefited from an influx of visitors during the jazz festival
  • The main street was busy with visitors.
  • Mercy College band performed in the town hall during the festival.
  • Stalls were well supported in Peace Park during the festival