Sarah McKenzie is passionate about jazz with an added pinch of blues and soul; she composes her own material, as well as plays her own arrangements of popular jazz standards. At 22 years of age, pianist, vocalist and composer Sarah is already a musician of remarkable flare and technique. She works regularly with her own group the 'Sarah McKenzie Septet', which has featured some of the best musicians in Australia, including Mat Jodrell, Troy Roberts, Jeremy Grieg, Danny Sausnjr, Tim Jago and Marc Early. Sarah's trio, as well as members from her Septet band have performed several times with Michael Buble, James Morrison, Jamie Oehlers, and Kate Cebrano.
Since studying at WAAPA, Sarah has won the Jack Bendat Scholarship, the Hawaiian Award for 'Most Outstanding Jazz Graduate', and the Perth Jazz Societies Award for the 'Most Outstanding Group of the Year for 2008'. A recipient of the National Songwriters Competition (ACMF 2002), Sarah has also been a finalist in the prestigious James Morrison scholarship for the last 5 years, and is the only finalist to be nominated in both vocal and instrumental sections.
Sarah has performed at some of Australia's highest profile Jazz Festivals and events, including the Wangaratta Jazz Festival, Melbourne International Jazz Festival, York Jazz festival, and the Melbourne Women in Jazz Festival. Such opportunities have put Sarah alongside greats such as James and John Morrison, Graeme Lyall, Joe Chindamo, Mat Jodrell and Daryl Sommers.
Sarah made her television debut performing with David Campbell at the L'Oreal Paris AFI awards, and this year sang backing vocals for Michael Buble on the Multi Platinum artist's 'Call me irresponsible' tour.
In May 2009 Sarah won the prestigious Generations in Jazz vocal scholarship. Held in Mount Gambier bringing together many of Australia's most talented young jazz musicians to participate in and compete for the James Morrison Scholarship, the City of Mount Gambier National Stage Band Awards and the Generations in Jazz Vocal Scholarship.
As well as these groups Sarah also works with many formations depending on the gig. We could organise anything from a guitar and piano duo to 12 piece big band. Her repertoire consists of Bluesy originals and swinging standards and the style of her groups are likened much to that of Harry Connick Jnr and Diana Krall. She is available for all functions, weddings, restaurant/piano bar work or any other performance.
Our function went extremely well on Friday night. Sarah Mackenzie is really lovely and the Trio played fabulously. We received many comments about how great the band was and how their music provided a fantastic background ambience that we were after. All in all, it all worked out extremely well on the night. Thanks again for all your help.
- Erica Rigoni, Metro Urban Management Pty Ltd
Sarah was received very well by the audiences and I received many complimentary comments about her myself.
- Mike Callaghan, Festival Organiser, Coolart Jazz Festival 2010
We had a good day out here with Sarah and the crowd really enjoyed the music. Sarah as very easy to work with and we will look forward to doing a similar event in the future. Please pass on our thanks to Sarah and to you as well for the ease at which the day ran.
- Mick Cashman, Otway Estate, Winery and Brewery
Have received fantastic feedback regarding Sarah Mackenzie and the band at last weekÃ¢Â€Â™s Cisco function. (They) said they were all very lovely, very professional, very thankful for the booking and very talented. We will definitely be using them again and again.
- Kim Dyer, Veritas