Noted for her ‘Impressive Acting’ (The Times) and ‘Searing Purity’ (The Scotsman), Jessica Leary trained on the Opera Course at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, and with English National Opera on the ‘Opera Works’ programme. A Samling Artist and Britten-Pears Young Artist, she was semi-finalist in the Royal Overseas League Competition 2015 and London Bach Singing Competition, and the winner of the Ye Cronies Opera Prize, the Frank Spedding Lieder Prize, Bill Dewar Memorial Award, Tovey Memorial Award, and the Governor’s Recital Prize (Runner-Up) at the RCS.
She has performed with leading ensembles including the Royal Scottish National Orchetsra, BBC Scottish Symohony Orchestra, Le Concert d’Astrée, Ludus Baroque, Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, and the Dunedin Consort under conductors including John Butt, Richard Egarr and Jean-Claude Picard.
Current and recent operatic performances include soprano soloist in Scottish Opera’s Pop-Up Opera Roadshow 2018; Iphis (Cover) for Iford Arts; Musetta La Boheme with Edinburgh International Festival (Outreach Performances);Helena A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Sandman (Cover) Hansel and Gretel, and Eurydice Orpheus in the Underworld (Education tour) all for Scottish Opera; 2. Edeldame Lohengrin at the Bayreuther Festspiele; Damigella/Venere L’incoronazione di Poppea under Richard Egarr at Aldeburgh; Poppea L’incoronazione di Poppea, Anna Reich Die Lustigen Weiber von Windsor, Lucia The Rape of Lucretia at the RCS; and the additional roles of Adina L’elisir d’amore, Esmeralda The Bartered Bride and Anne Truelove The Rakes Progress.
On the concert platform, highlights have included Bach St Matthew Passion for the Dunedin Consort; Villa-Lobos Bachianas Brasileiras with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra (recorded for BBC Radio 3); Bach Weihnachtsoratorium for Ludus Baroque; Lisette in excerpts from La Rondine and Vaughan Williams A Pastoral Symphony with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra; Handel Messiah at Canterbury Cathedral; Handel Dixit Dominus and Bach Magnificat for Edinburgh Royal Choral Union; in addition to regular recitals across the UK.