Bridget O'Donnell, violin
As the leader of the London based Hill Quartet, Australian violinist Bridget O’Donnell enjoys a varied career as a chamber, orchestral and crossover musician. This summer, she will appear at the West Cork, Kings Lynn and Hay Chamber Music Festivals as well as undertaking residencies in Aldeburgh for Britten Pears Arts and in Paris for ProQuartet. Currently Chamber Music Fellows at the Royal Academy of Music, the quartet will begin a three year Artists in Residence position at Wolfson College (University of Oxford) in 2022. Recent performances include the North York Moors and Rye Arts Chamber Festivals, Conway Hall and Yeovil Chamber Concerts. Outside of the quartet, Bridget has collaborated with artists including Kim Kashkashian, Leslie Howard, Pinchas Zukerman and Levon Chilingirian.
Since finishing the London Symphony Orchestra String scheme, Bridget now performs regularly with the LSO in London and across Europe. She also plays with the English Chamber Orchestra and will be touring with them across Europe and Turkey in summer 2022. Bridget has also performs with the Manchester Collective, Sinfonia Cyrmu, Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields, United Strings of Europe and Opera Australia Orchestra. Prior to moving to London, Bridget was the Sydney Symphony Orchestra Violin Fellow in 2016 and 2017 during which time she performed as the soloist on the 2017 Regional Tour and was mentored by concertmaster Andrew Haveron.
In April 2022, Bridget will co-direct Sinfonia Cymru with jazz-bassist Misha Mullov-Abbado. The program, ‘Songs for the Earth’ fuses folk, jazz and classical music together highlighting the human connection to the planet. As part of the Hill Quartet, Bridget performed Mullov-Abbado’s chamber music on the EP ‘Three Road Songs’ released on the independent label ‘October House Records’ in January 2022.
Bridget holds a deep commitment to her pedagogy work and maintains a small class in London as well as teaching on the La Mariette course. She was awarded the highest possible mark for the Licentiate of RAM Teaching Diploma and previously held a mentoring position on the Marryat Players Course (London) and Siete Lagos Festival (Patagonia) as well as a peripatetic positions at Reddam House and Crown. St Public Schools in Sydney.
The winner of the 2018 Marten Bequest Award in music, she studied at the Royal Academy of Music under Levon Chilingirian and was awarded an MA with Distinction in 2020. Whilst studying, she organised the 2020 Australian Bushfire Benefit Concert which brought together over 100 Australian music stars from across the U.K and Europe, under the helm of conductor Simone Young to raise a substantial fund for much needed relief aid. In addition, she led the RAM Chamber and Symphony Orchestras and was awarded the RAM Sir John Barbirolli Memorial Prize for services in performance.
Before moving to the U.K, she performed extensively with the Australian Youth Orchestra from 2010-2015 and also received her BMus (Perf) from the Sydney Conservatorium of Music where she studied with Alice Waten. She is the recipient of Tait Memorial Prize, the Australian Elizabethan Trust Award, a BBM Scholarship and the Ernest Llewellyn Scholarship.
Bridget performs on an 1890 Leandro Bisiach violin that was used by Russell Crowe in the film Master & Commander, generously on loan to her from private donors, as well as a John Dodd bow on loan through the Beares International Violin Society.