Blake Wilner

b. 28 June 1973, Perth, Western Australia, Australia. Wilner began his music studies in 1991, first at the University of Western Australia, then the Australian Institute of Music (Sydney), followed by…
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Artist Biography

b. 28 June 1973, Perth, Western Australia, Australia. Wilner began his music studies in 1991, first at the University of Western Australia, then the Australian Institute of Music (Sydney), followed by the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts. All of this continued for the greater part of the decade, culminating in 1997 in an Associate Degree in Music (Jazz Performance). The following year, Wilner was a member of the Western Australia edition of Graham Collier’s orchestra. In this same year he also worked at various Australian venues with artists such as James Morrison, Ernie Watts, and Wilber Wild. He also worked in theatre pit bands in Australia and was a member of the West Australian Youth Jazz Orchestra, appearing on the CDs Tom Terrific and Live Fremantle. In 1999, he spent a few months in New York City, USA playing and also studying with among others Rufus Reid and Mick Goodrick, and was there again in 2000 before settling in London, England. In the early 00s, he performed extensively at many leading London jazz venues, including Pizza Express, Jazz Café, 606 Club and the Bull’s Head.

Playing in duo, trio and quartet formats, a regular collaborator of Wilner’s has been saxophonist Brandon Allen. Wilner has also played with many of London’s new wave of jazz musicians, including singer Fiona Campbell, saxophonist Kellie Santin and trumpeter Nick Etwell. During his time in London, he has become a respected teacher, working at the Ivor Mairants Guitar Centre and the Blackheath Conservatoire. Among festivals at which he has appeared are the Soho Jazz Festival, the London Bridge Autumn Festival, and at the Umbria Jazz Festival in Italy. In 2002, he made a return visit to his homeland, touring in conjunction with the release of The Bookshop, and performed at the Melbourne International Jazz Festival. In 2003, he toured extensively in the UK, playing many venues including appearances at the Cheltenham Jazz Festival and the City of London Festival. Inventive in both performance and composing, Wilner has an eclectic repertoire to which he brings lyrical flair.