Brence Coghill / Image Workshop

Vanessa is a Melbourne-based musician whose work ranges from cabaret singing to experimental sound art. She is passionate about bringing new sounds out of the concert hall into new environments where they can survive, thrive, tell stories and make new friends. Her career has spanned dance performance and teaching, music arrangement for film, new music composition and performance, and instrumental and vocal performance and teaching.

Vanessa completed her Bachelor of Music in composition in 2009 at the Australian National University under Jim Cotter and Larry Sitsky. Her work while studying focussed on small chamber groups, including works performed by Dominant 7 and The Griffyn Ensemble, and on telling stories through song with both music theatre style pieces and narrative-based song cycles. She has continued this work in both Canberra and Melbourne, producing and performing in a cabaret for the Melbourne Fringe Festival in 2012 and performing in The Girls in the Spiegeltent during its visits to Canberra. Speaking of Canberra, Vanessa was part of the award-winning music team for the Canberra-produced short film A Song, which won Best Music at the 2015 Canberra Short Film Festival and had its international debut at the Chicago International Music and Movies Festival in April of 2016.

In 2015 Vanessa was co-creator and producer on Old Tech New Decksan experimental new music show that used the sounds of old technology to make new music. After winning Best Music at the 2015 Melbourne Fringe Festival, Vanessa and colleague Matt Rankin took the show to the 2016 Adelaide Fringe Festival where they picked up a Highly Commended Weekly Music Award and also a nomination for the John Chattaway Innovation Award. In September of 2017 they released an album of music drawn from the same source material. This Version Is No Longer Supported is available digitally on iTunes, bandcamp, and other online services, as well as on black or white vinyl through the Old Tech New Decks Big Cartel site.

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