ABOUT JESSICA GRAHAM
After receiving much acclaim within the world of Classical music, including 2 music scholarships for violin performance, Jessica Graham decided to pursue her passion for composition. With her unique talent to play a number of instruments combined with her natural gift for improvisation and composition, she has gone on to release her first EP, “Raw”, independently (2014) under her stage name, Wren, as well as work alongside some international names, such as touring with and composing/recording string orchestrations for Irish-Born Australian Idol Winner, Damien Leith (2015-current), working with Aria nominated producer, Yantra de Vilder, (2015-current) on both of their original works as well as joint collaborations, collaborating with Oliver Tank (2010-current) on his personal work as well as joint ventures and co-writing with 3 x national drumming champion, Joe Taranto, (2016-current) on a project called 'Collide'.
Jessica has received much musical acclaim for her contemporary songwriting under Wren, both nationally and internationally, receiving airplay on over 200 stations across Australia and abroad, including triple j, triple j unearthed and home brew radio, as well as internationally recognized awards for her compositions and music videos.
Some highlights from these include:
After achieving First Class Honours and the Dean’s Award for her musical composition/improvisations and thesis in 2015, The Border Crosser, Jessica was offered an Australian Postgraduate Award Scholarship to study a Doctorate of Creative Arts from 2016. Her focus is cross-genre and intercultural in nature, stretching her Irish/Celtic influenced-Indie voice across a wide variety of unfamiliar, musical contexts and hybridized, traditional music forms in order to push her musical
compositions and improvisations to the next level.
Previously working with crossovers between Buddhist Shunyata, Tibetan Drones, Christian Plainchant (Hildegard of Bingen) and Irish-Celtic Laments, she is now researching, exploring and incorporating East-Asian influences, particularly that of Japanese Honkyoku traditions and Taiko (Drumming) as well as Japanese poet Basho’s hybridized form of Haiku, Haibun, as a basis for her lyrical content.
She believes that as John Cage said, “A new language requires a new technique. If you don’t require a new technique, then what you’re saying probably isn’t new.” Therefore, by removing sounds from their familiar contexts and traditions, she believes she can contemporize them and move them into the future, whilst still respecting their history and preserving their beauty.
AWARDS, DISTINCTIONS & RESEARCH CONTRIBUTIONS
- Semifinalist in the International Songwriting Competition 2014 (NASHVILLE) for track, Here
- Soldiers Music Video Selected for Los Angeles New Wave International
Film Festival 2015
- Soldiers Music Video Selected for Los Angeles Cinéfest 2015
- Soldiers Music Video Selected for New Film Makers New York Festival 2015
held at Anthology Archives NYC
- Soldiers Music Video Selected for Underground Film Festival 2015 (MUNICH)
- Soldiers Music Video selected for Biennial Edition of CinéWomen Magazine 2015
- Soldiers Music Video Selected for the 6th Annual ITSA Film Festival 2015 (SONORA, CALIFORNIA)
- Soldiers Music Video Selected for NYC Independent Film Festival 2015
- Soldiers Selected for 2015 International Film Festival of Cinematic Arts (LOS ANGELES)
- Soldiers Music Video wins Best Music Video at the APEX Film Festival (ROCHESTER, MN, USA)
- Soldiers Music Video receives Special Mention at I Filmaker International Film Festival 2015 (MARBELLA, SPAIN)
- Soldiers Music Video Selected for Williamsburg International Film Festival 2015
- Soldiers Music Video Selected for Salento International Film Festival 2015
- Soldiers Music Video Selected for Guam Film Festival 2015
- Semifinalist in the Unsigned Only Competition 2015 (NASHVILLE) for 2 tracks in 5 different Categories
- Soldiers Music Video makes Semifinals in the Video Performance Category of the Unsigned Only Competition 2015 (NASHVILLE).
- Finalist in the Unsigned Only Competition 2015 for track, Raw
- Soldiers Music Video makes Finals in the Video Performance Category for the Unsigned Only Competition 2015 (NASHVILLE)
- Overall Honorable Mention in the Unsigned Only Competition 2015 (NASHVILLE)
- Soldiers Music Video receives Award of Excellence at International Film
Festival of Cinematic Arts 2015 (LOS ANGELES)
- Soldiers Music Video Selected for Seeyousound International Music Festival 2016 (TURIN, ITALY)
- Alive awarded Third Place by the Songwriter’s Association of Washington (DC) in the Adult Contemporary Section of their 32nd Mid-Atlantic Song Contest 2016
- Alive Music Video selected for New York City Independent Film Festival 2016
- Semifinalist in the Unsigned Only Competition 2016 (NASHVILLE) for 3 tracks in 2 different categories
- Finalist in the Unsigned Only Competition 2016 (NASHVILLE) in the Screenshot category
- Panelist on the WSU HCA Blues Forum with internationally renowned musicians, Dom Turner and Phil Wiggins: see it here.
- Performed a live version of Conqueror, part of Honours Project entitled, The Border Crosser, with producer/composer/pianist Yantra de Vilder at WSU for The Noise and Silence: SYO Mentoring Project in September 2015. Check it here and here.
- Performed a live version of Yantra de Vilder’s work, Haiku, at WSU for Noise and Silence: SYO Mentoring Project in September 2015. Check the full program here and find out more about it here.
- Panelist and Solo Speaker for WSU’s Interventions and Intersections Conference: Beyond Boundaries – 06-07 July 2016 Awarded: Highly Commended Thesis. Read the full program here.
- Alive Music Video makes Official Selection for New Filmmakers New York 2016
- Alive Music Video is a semifinalist in the Cine Pobre Film Festival 2016 (Mexico)
- Honourable Mention Award in the Unsigned Only Competition 2016 (NASHVILLE) for instrumental track, Ireland Meets Tibet
- M'fhíorghrá (original work) performed live (improvised version using Cells from original score) at Creativity Unlimited Festival 2016 with Internationally renowned composer and drummer, Holly Harrison, composer & guitarist, Joseph Tabua, and pianist, Lizzi Graham. See program here.
- Performed a live improvisation with Yantra de Vilder at the Creativity Unlimited Festival 2016 prior to the showing of her film, Haiku. See program here.
- Performed a live in-studio improvisation with collaborator and poet, Louise Carter, to the reading of her poem, The Bird, as part of the Creativity Unlimited Festival 2016
- Performed a presentation at the Creativity Unlimited Festival 2016; Creative Process On The Threshold Of New Knowledge
- Alive Music Video official selection for Byron Bay Film Festival 2016
- Alive Music Video official selection for LA Femme International Film Festival 2016 (LOS ANGELES)
- Alive Music Video is a finalist in the Byron Bay International Film Festival APRA AMCOS Music Video Awards
- Here Music Video is a finalist in the Made in Melbourne Film Festival 2016
- Here Music Video wins Best Music Video at Made in Melbourne Film Festival 2016
- Semifinalist in the International Songwriting Competition 2016 (NASHVILLE) in 2 categories; World Music for Ireland Meets Tibet & Music Video for Soldiers
- Here Music Video makes quarterfinals at the International Music Video Underground 2017 (PARIS) for both Best Music Video & Best Director
- Semifinalist in the International Songwriting Competition 2017 (NASHVILLE) for Soldiers in the Screenshot Category
- Performed as a duo with Internationally renowned Guzheng player, Chiu Tan Ching (CHINA) at Poetic Energies Across Sonic Space Festival 2017 (SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA)
- Performed as a trio with Aria Award Nominated Producer, Yantra de Vilder, as the pianist (Avoca, Australia) and Internationally renowned Taegum player, Hyelim Kim (London, Seoul) at the Creativity Unlimited Festival 2017 (SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA)