Having trained in London and Ireland, Cork born vocalist Laoise Leahy (née O’Hanlon) has returned to her Leeside roots to raise her young family and continue her musical pursuits in performance and education in the thriving musical hub that is Cork City.
Laoise has developed into one of the most accomplished, versatile and in-demand singers on the Irish jazz and pop scenes. Laoise has performed and recorded with the likes of Bon Iver, Gilbert O’ Sullivan,
Damon Albarn, Damien Rice, Brian Deady, Efterklang, Jack O’ Rourke and many others. She is now ready to take wings as a solo artist in her own right and bring some original music to her audience alongside her own unique interpretations of jazz material she has honed over the years.
Following her studies at Cork’s Colaiste Stiofain Naofa Music, Management and Sound course, Laoise went on to become a BMus Graduate of London College of Music and MA graduate of the CIT Cork School of Music. She received top overall performer awards from both institutions and has continued a vibrant career balancing performance and education.
In 2011 she co-founded Corks first specialist vocal tuition centre ‘Voiceworks Studio’ with colleague and renowned vocalist and educator, Gemma Sugrue and currently lectures at the MTU Cork School of Music, specialising in pop and jazz vocal performance on degree and postgraduate level courses. Laoise was involved in writing and developing the vocal curriculum of the BA in Popular Music (Hons) degree course at its inception in 2012 and served as course coordinator for five years. The BA in Popular Music is a flourishing degree, producing an exciting roster of graduates.
Laoise regularly performs with many bands and large ensembles such as New Irish Jazz Orchestra, RTE Concert Orchestra, Cork Concert Orchestra, Cork Pops Orchestra, Hothouse Big band, among others and has toured professionally with theatre companies throughout Europe. She has released original music which has been internationally broadcast on BBC, RTE 1, Sky Showcase, RTE Lyric Fm, Newstalk and Today FM among others. She has performed at many festivals including Electric Picnic, Cork Jazz Festival, Limerick Jazz Festival and many more. Now embarking on an exciting new departure into a career as a solo artist, working with stunning collaborative musicians with the support of the Arts
Council, Laoise looks forward to a busy season of recording and performing ahead.
“Great Jazz Voice on Blue”Carl Corcoran – Lyric FM (Blue of the Night)
“…some of the finest work by an Irish jazz artist in the last ten years.”
“Laoise Leahy is one of those career vocalists who comes along and joins up the dots that many of usDr. Linley Hamilton BBC Ulster ‘Jazz World’ broadcaster, trumpeter, composer/arranger, educator
spend our careers trying to do. She brings years as a vocalist in different arenas into partnership with her
educational duties which have inspired a creative approach to the delivery of jazz standards and original song. One of the key vocalists in the New Irish Jazz Orchestra, Laoise teams up with director Paul Dunlea and some of the best musicians on the Irish jazz scene. It may be some of the finest by an Irish jazz artist in the last ten years. When conditions are right to tour, she is going to blow the scene out of the water…”
“[Laoise’s] voice is a flexible, facile instrument wielded by an ambitious and visionary player. It can be
sweet or melancholy, polished or raw and is wide in range and broad in stylistic scope”