Elly Hoyt will soon touch down in her father’s homeland of USA, to undertake a prestigious Masters in jazz performance.
As only one of four jazz vocalists selected worldwide, Elly will attend the New England Conservatory (NEC) in Boston for the next two years to learn from some of the world’s leading jazz musicians.
The 28-year-old Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University graduate says it will be an incredible time for her to consolidate what she does know, while exploring what she doesn’t.
“Being able to spend two whole years immersed in my craft is what I’m most looking forward to,” she says.
“The best decisions come when you know yourself and what works for you, so I hope that this time will become a new foundation for my future.
“This is perfect timing for me — right now Boston is where I need to be, it’s like a blueprint in my body.”
This timing is also reminiscent of her family in Tasmania where she grew up. Elly’s father, Stewart Hoyt, left America when he was 28 to come to Australia — so it’s a place close to her heart.
“I feel quite at home in America and to be able to return to my heritage is such a treat.”
“I’m excited about working with incredible musicians including Dominique Eade and Ran Blake who will be my teachers in my first semester at NEC”.
Elly also received a Martin Bequest Travelling Scholarship to assist with her journey to Boston, marking the first time a jazz musician has been awarded the honour in the 40 year history of the prize.
Wowing audiences with her soulful voice since she was just five years old, Elly paved her way into the Australian jazz scene when she won the prestigious Generation in Jazz vocal scholarship in 2008, which was judged by James Morrison.
“From the moment I first heard Elly sing, I knew she had that classic, indefinable thing that makes one a jazz singer,” Mr Morrisonsaid.
“It’s not just a sound, or a choice of notes but a way of approaching a song that lets the listener know – this is the real thing.”
Elly released her debut self-titled album in late 2010 and won Best Australian Jazz Vocal Album at the Australian Jazz Bell Awards the following year.
After completing her Bachelor of Music majoring in jazz voice, Elly went on to undertake her Masters of Vocal Pedagogy with Dr Irene Bartlett, while also teaching at Queensland Conservatorium.
Her latest album ‘Oranges & Sunshine’ was released March 2015 and is available on iTunes.