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Jane Sheldon

vocal performer, exploratory chamber music



Jane Sheldon is an Australian-American soprano who specializes in the creation and performance of exploratory chamber music.

Praised by the New York Times for singing “sublimely”, the Sydney Morning Herald for “a brilliant tour de force”, and The Washington Post for "a stunning performance", she has appeared with the London Philharmonic Orchestra, Pinchgut Opera (AUS), Sound Icon (USA), Ekmeles (USA), Talea Ensemble (USA), Wet Ink (USA), the Australian String Quartet, and Sydney Chamber Opera (AUS), where she is an Artistic Associate. She has worked extensively with composers as they create new works for voice, most frequently with John Zorn, whose music Jane has performed across the globe. Jane has performed at international arts festivals such as the Sydney Festival, Jerusalem Sacred Music Festival, Lincoln Center Festival, the Bendigo International Festival of Exploratory Music, Jacob's Pillow, Prototype Festival, and the Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival.

Jane is the director of Symbioses, an Australian chamber music series focused on new duos and trios, and is the co-director of the Resonant Bodies Festival's activities in Australia, with Jessica Aszodi




Photos (clockwise) by: Lisa Tomasetti; Zan Wimberley; Peter Godfrey-Smith; Peter Godfrey-Smith; Zan Wimberley; Zan Wimberley; Lisa Tomasetti; Samuel Hodge, commissioned by Carriageworks.

upcoming shows


Below are some of Jane's performances made available on New York's New Sounds (WXQR):

Wild Romance by Georges Aperghis. US premiere. Performed live at the Library of Congress in Washington DC with Talea Ensemble.

King Lear: Act IV Scene 6 by Josep Sanz Quintana. US premiere. Performed live at New York's MATA Festival with Ekmeles.



'Sheldon's performance was a remarkable tour-de-force – a 60-minute exploration of boundaries of vocal possibilities, maintained with remarkable tonal control.' – Sydney Morning Herald, April 2018 (Sydney Chamber Opera, The Howling Girls)

'Sheldon's command of pure and profane vocal sounds is remarkable. Her stamina likewise.' – Audrey Journal, March 2018 (Sydney Chamber Opera, The Howling Girls)

'Sheldon displayed complete command... she effortlessly executed the intervallic gymnastics required...' – Partial Durations, September 2017 (BIFEM, with Argonaut Ensemble and Elena Schwarz)

'...a magnificent acting performance from Jane Sheldon...' – Timeout Sydney, August 2017 (Sydney Chamber Opera, Rape of Lucretia)

‘From Sheldon, we heard soft tones that were hushed, purple, quasi-onomatopoeic, and much more; we heard something closer to speech and we heard snatches of operatic vocalism…. I only wished we could have heard another performance straight away.’ – Seen and Heard International, October 2015 (Recital of Schoenberg and Lachenmann, with Zubin Kanga)

'full-on vocal virtuosity, explosive wit and an overabundance of text, languages, ideas and techniques.' – New York Times, February 2015 (John Cage's Four Solos for Voice (93-96) Avant Music Festival, New York, with Ekmeles)

‘At midpoint came the most exciting piece of the evening, Four Solos For Voice (93-96) from 1988. It was a set piece of a sort, with a spotlight often dramatically falling on soprano Jane Sheldon. None of the four could be called principal, but Sheldon was striking, growling and shrieking…’ – The Wire, May 2015, (John Cage's Four Solos for Voice (93-96) Avant Music Festival, New York, with Ekmeles)

‘From its first sounds, this unusual recording draws in the listener, captivating with the limpid beauty of music and performances…. Sheldon brings her signature purity of tone and uplifting intelligence to each of the tracks.’ – The Australian, January 2015, (Nature, with Nicole Panizza)

‘Sheldon… did virtuoso work.’ – Seen and Heard International, September 2014

‘Soprano Jane Sheldon… brought mesmerising emotional truth to the performance – the skill and maturity of this remarkable young Sydney-born, Manhattan-based singer were the highlight.’ – The Australian, March 2014

‘A performance of overwhelming intensity from soprano Jane Sheldon…riveting stage presence. Vocally, Sheldon is equally compelling, her diction superb, as is her control of Kancheli’s long, long lines.’ – Limelight Magazine, December 2013


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