JESSICA O’DONOGHUE “A mercurial talent, Jessica has created songs with real depth. Listening to the album is a full-bodied experience: theatrical and intimate, operatic and haunting, raw and urgent, at once dark and contemplative and inspiring. It’s pop music with a difference.” – Ashleigh Wilson (Arts Editor – The Australian) Jessica O’Donoghue likes to call herself a reformed opera singer. Trained as a soprano with a Bachelor of Music from the University of Sydney and a Diploma of Opera from the Victorian College of the Arts, she came to love many things about opera: the soaring sounds, the scale of performances, the intensity of emotions. But something wasn’t quite right. She had developed a formidable technique over the years – she was invited, for instance to Covent Garden as a guest young artist, and she performed as a principal artist for many of the major opera companies in Australia – but the world of opera made her feel restricted and restless. So she went looking for something new. Emerge, her debut album, is the result of that search. More than a decade has passed since Jessica turned her back on an opera career to pursue eclectic musical experiences bound only by imagination. Her projects ranged from pop music, particularly with the Sydney band CODA, to jazz, cabaret, musical theatre, Renaissance music and (yes) contemporary opera. Her many collaborators include Nick Wales, Jane Tyrell, Elana Stone, Jared Underwood, Bree Van Reyk, Alyx Dennison and Steve Clisby. She has performed in festivals and venues around the world including VIVID Festival, Sydney Festival (Opera House), Adelaide Festival (Adelaide Festival Centre), Melbourne International Arts Festival (Malthouse), Movimentos Festival (Wolfsburg), Georgetown Festival (Penang), and multiple festivals around Europe (Luxembourg, Stockholm, Ludwigsburg and Ludwigshafen) while continuing to pursue fresh ways to tell stories through music. Jessica’s creative ambitions have culminated in Emerge, a remarkable statement of intent from a singer confident in her own sound. It was recorded and produced in Sydney by Neal Sutherland, an ARIA-award winning artist who has worked closely with the likes of Bertie Blackman, Jack Ladder, Sarah Blasko, Megan Washington, Josh Pyke, Julian Hamilton (Presets) and Sophie Lowe. Jessica has recently been announced as a finalist in the 2016 MusicOz Australian Independent Music Awards.