Australian violinist Bridget O’Donnell is enjoying a varied career as a recitalist, orchestral and chamber musician. She completed her undergraduate studies with Alice Waten, as a scholar at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music. Shortly after, she was selected to join the Sydney Symphony Orchestra Fellowship program in both 2016 and 2017 and was mentored by Andrew Haveron. During this period, she worked closely with artists such as Anthony Marwood and performed in masterclasses for Christian Tetzlaff, Vadim Guzman, Lang Lang and Ray Chen. As a result of a Fellowship collaboration, she was invited to study intensively with Pinchas Zukerman at the 2017 Young Artists Program in Canada. In addition, she was honoured to perform as the soloist with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra on the 2017 Regional Tour, giving 9 performances across New South Wales.
With the support of a Marten Bequest, the Tait Memorial Trust and the Ian Potter Cultural Trust, she is currently working towards her Master of Arts at the Royal Academy of Music under Levon Chillingirian. Since moving to London in September, she has lead the RAM Chamber Orchestra, the Manson Ensemble and performed with pianist Leslie Howard at Australia House. She now regularly appears with the Academy of St Martin in the Fields and the English Chamber Orchestra. She will also be performing at the BBC Proms in July as part of a performance bringing together musicians from the Royal Academy of Music and the Juilliard School, under Edward Gardiner.
An avid chamber musician, Bridget has enjoyed performing extensively throughout Australia and Europe. As the youngest member of the Verbruggen Ensemble, she collaborated frequently with principal members of the Sydney Symphony. Having spent time studying at the ProQuartet seminar in Paris and the Estivo Festival in Verona, important mentors include Paul Katz (Cleveland Quartet), Reiner Schmidt (Hagen Quartet) and the Goldner Quartet. Alongside her work with the Hill Quartet, this year Bridget performed and taught in Patagonia, Argentina as part of the IX Siete Lagos Chamber Music Festival and also recently Romsey Chamber Music Festival performing works including the Enescu Octet, and the Kabalevsky and Kreisler Quartets.
She is particularly passionate about engaging in cross-genre collaborations and with the Hill Quartet has commissioned a jazz-inspired string quartet by Misha Mullov-Abbado, to be premiered in October. Bridget has a great passion for South American music and performs with the tango orchestra, Tangalo, as lead violin.
Next year, Bridget will return to Australia to give recitals and undertake concerto engagements with the Willoughby Symphony Orchestra.
Bridget plays on the 1890 Leandro Bisiach violin used in the film Master & Commander, generously on loan to her by private donors.