January 9, 2023RCA's Jazz Jam Scholarship

For over 10 years, the Rotary Centre for the Arts has been the proud home of Jazz Jam – a jam night where local jazz musicians, both students, and pros, play some of the great jazz standards live in our Atrium. Hosted every Thursday at 5 PM by talented local jazz musicians Craig Thomson and Stephen Buck, this staple in the Kelowna jazz community always brings an amazing atmosphere to the RCA. The intention of the program in its creation was to provide young students with a space to play in front of a crowd. Differing from school band programs, which may only perform a handful of shows every year, the Jazz Jam offers real life practice and exposure to being on stage once a week. That adds up to a lot of experience! Jazz Jam is an accessible, free/by donation community program that showcases some of the best up and coming jazz players in the Okanagan. We love seeing musicians in our community have a place to jam while the audience taps their feet the whole way through.

In a statement about the Jazz Jam written in September 2021 by co-host Craig Thomson, Craig stated “In the future, I hope to use a portion of the donations to set up a small scholarship fund for students who plan to study jazz.” Today, we are thrilled to have accomplished just that with the official RCA Jazz Jam Scholarship. These scholarships were created in partnership with the RCA and both hosts, Craig and Stephen. 50% of your tips donated each night of Jazz Jam are then put into to the  RCA Jazz Jam Scholarship fund. The scholarships are presented to students who are regular contributors to the Thursday Jazz Jam, and who plan to study Jazz at the post-secondary level. ⁠The first two recipients were Jon Finlayson and Alex Klappe, two talented students who perform regularly with Jazz Jam. Both students are now pursuing Jazz Studies at Capilano University in Vancouver. The RCA wishes them the best of luck!⁠

We are excited to be able to help set these students up for the next steps in their musical careers thanks to donations from people like you. Stop by the Jazz Jam every Thursday at 5 PM in the RCA Atrium and experience incredible live jazz while supporting a great cause.

Stephen Buck & Jon Finlayson

Craig Thomson & Alex Klappe

RCA's Jazz Jam Scholarship