Improv Idol

Who is Australia’s next king or queen of improvised music?

Finalists announced

We are getting down to the nitty gritty now of working out exactly who is the best musical improviser in the land, with the final list of Improv Idol contestants made public today.

Improv Idol head honchos, Clinton Green and Carmen Chan, spent several days going through a pile of diverse entries before whittling it down to these contestants:

  • Mat Blackwell (guitar/kazoo/fully sikk wikkid beatboxing yo)
  • Gary Butler (guitar/toys/stupidity)
  • Brae Grimes (cornet/mellophone)
  • Gemma Horbury (trumpet/vocals)
  • Jessica Isgro (vocals)
  • Barnaby Oliver (guitar)
  • David Seedsman (sax/drums/guitar/vocals)
  • Shane Van Den Akker (vocals)

Thanks to everyone who applied, unfortunately there wasn’t room to fit in everyone this time around.

More details about our extemporary heroes and their Improv Idol journeys will be revealed over the next couple of weeks on the contestants page, to assist any voters who want to do their background research.

Introducting the third and final Improv Idol! judge: Ian Parsons

Every judging panel needs a little love, and anyone who has tuned into PBS-FM’s The Sound Karlheinz and IanBarrier knows about Ian Parsons’ love affair with music. When he’s not on the airwaves, Ian’s hobbies include musicology and Stockhausen. He brings an encyclopaedic knowledge avant garde music to Improv Idol!, whether composed or improvised. Contestants might be advised to bone up on their Stockhausen trivia to really please this judge; just don’t make any smart alec comments about Cardew*.

(*20th century experimental music joke)

Introducing the second Improv Idol! judge: Sean Baxter

Master Hitter of Things and long-time former curator of Make It Up Club, Sean Baxter has sean-baxterspent the best part of two decades obliterating the limits of free improvisation into previously-uncharted territories like death metal and noise. Baxter knows his avant garde improvisation history backwards, and has an opinion or three about it as well, so expect some straight-talking from his end of our illustrious Improv Idol judges panel; it may be the first time Adorno has every been quoted in a talent show. Asked to supply a definition of music for a recent book by Jon Rose, Baxter’s reply ended with “Music can get fucked”. Indeed.

Introducing the first Improv Idol! judge: Carolyn Connors

Carolyn Connors maskedYes, Her Aural Awesomeness, Ms Carolyn Connors, has wowed the world through all things that involve breath. From the back page of the New York Times, to the deepest, darkest corners of the Melbourne improv scene, Carolyn has pretty much done it all; and in spectacular fashion as well. We are thrilled to announce her as our very first Improv Idol! judge. Her learned companions-in-judgement will be announced in coming weeks…

Welcome to Improv Idol!

Improv Idol – one part talent show, one part music improvisation laboratory, with bucket loads of audience participation and fun. Think ‘Make It Up Club’ meets some TV talent show.Barnaby Oliver and Clinton Green

On Thursday 1st of October 2015, at the Wesley Anne in Northcote, we will choose the greatest improviser in Australia. Guided by an panel of expert judges, YOU will vote for the best performer in an ensemble. The winner then moves onto the next round, continuing their Improv Idol journey.

You the audience will decide who continues through Improv Idol, and the manner in which they improvise!

Think you’ve got what it takes to be the king or queen of Australian improvised music? Put in your application now (entries close 4 September)

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