About Olivia



After giving her first per­form­ance at the age of four, and attend­ing Royal Col­lege of Music Junior depart­ment, Olivia won music schol­ar­ships to Sherborne and then Bry­an­ston Schools, both in Dorset. She gradu­ated from the Royal North­ern Col­lege of Music in 1999; B.Mus (Hons) in Aca­dem­ic Stud­ies (2.1). At 21, inspired by a jazz summer school at the Guild­hall School of music, Olivia dis­covered the art of impro­visa­tion. This pro­pelled her into a post­gradu­ate dip­loma at Leeds Col­lege of Music (Dis­tinc­tion in 2002). At Leeds, her curi­os­ity drew her to many dif­fer­ent styles of music such as Cuban music, Jazz and par­tic­u­larly Indian Music.

After gradu­ation she spent two years per­form­ing with the Indian fusion band Savateen, play­ing their own ori­gin­al works. High­lights were the Brno Street fest­iv­al in the Czech Repub­lic and at the Mil­len­ni­um Park and Birla Temple, in Cal­cutta. In 2005, she decided to follow her dream by going to India to study with violin maes­tro Kala Ram­nath, which became the first of many visits to the coun­try. Her most recent visit was in 2019/20.

Performing projects and Collaborations

Within Jazz and World Music, Olivia has worked on many dif­fer­ent pro­jects in UK and abroad with illu­minar­ies such as Jean Tous­saint, Tony Remy, Mat­thew Bourne, Adam Fairhall, Stuart McCal­lum, Ala­baster DePlume, Kirsty Almeida, Shir­ley Smart and Jason Singh, Kefaya and Suns of Arqa.

Olivia has also worked with pop legends Paul Heaton and Jacqui Abbott.
She has played at Gla­ston­bury fest­iv­al and at major UK venues such as Queen Eliza­beth Hall, Pur­cell Room, Lowry Centre and Bridg­wa­ter Hall.

How­ever, it was always Olivi­a’s dream to com­pose music of her own. She has been the instig­at­or and leader of a hand­ful of groups over the years. Firstly Strung Out with Lamb’s bass player Jon Thorne. She also lead ‘The Owl Ensemble’, fea­tur­ing Simply Red’s bass player Sylvan Richard­son, and John Ellis (keys) and Myke Wilson (Drums). The Owl Ensemble String Quar­tet appeared with Beau­ti­ful South’s Paul Heaton for his show “The 8th” at the Bar­bican Centre (London) and Lowry (Manchester).

Her ongo­ing band Unfurl is an innov­at­ive quin­tet who col­lab­or­ate, draw­ing par­tic­u­larly from their  influ­ences of Jazz and Indian. They have appeared at Manchester, Marsden, London and Brecon Jazz Fest­ivals as well as at venues such as the Bridge­wa­ter Hall Foyer and the Birm­ing­ham Sym­phony Hall Foyer, Sage Gateshead.


In 2009 Olivia was one of eight musi­cians in the coun­try to be selec­ted to be a par­ti­cipant of the Ser­i­ous Take Five artist devel­op­ment scheme. Olivia has reg­u­larly since looked to the Arts Coun­cil Eng­land, for help with tour­ing costs and to devel­op music.

Classical Indian Music

She has per­formed with Kousic Sen, Lisa Mallet, Jonath­an Meyer, Jas­deep Singh and has given solo recit­als in the UK. She most recently col­lab­or­ated with Chitrav­ina Maes­tro N. Ravikir­an. She per­forms every few years inter­na­tion­ally with Mukesh Jhadav


Multi-Media Work

Olivia has always been inter­ested in com­bin­ing with other art forms. In 2006 she com­posed the soundtrack to a doc­u­ment­ary film for Reli­gious Edu­ca­tion in schools, ‘Buddhist Pil­grim­age: An Indian Spir­itu­al Jour­ney’ (The Clear Vision Trust).
A par­tic­u­lar high­light of her career was work­ing with LaMa­chine, 2008 com­mis­sioned by Liv­er­pool European Cap­it­al of Cul­ture, described by The Observ­er as, ‘the biggest, most spec­tac­u­lar piece of street theatre ever seen in the UK’.

She also com­posed for and dir­ec­ted Mask, a multi-media col­lab­or­a­tion at The Con­tact Theatre, as part of Manchester Jazz Fest­iv­al in 2009 with moving image artist Mark Camer­on Minard and her band ‘Unfurl”.

Recording/ Albums

Olivia has recor­ded with pro­du­cer Tony Remy for sax­o­phon­ist Jean Toussaint’s album ‘Nazaire’. She fea­tures on Kirsty Almeida’s ‘Pure Blue Green’, Zoe Kyoti’s “Wish­ing Bone”, Jadid Ensemble’s “Sigh of the Moor”, Kefay­a’s “Radio Inter­na­tion­al”, “Seam­ing” by Seam­ing To and Fiona Nehama Abrahami’s ‘Random Excess’. 

Olivia released her own album ‘Amoghasiddhi’ in 2008. Owl by the Owl Ensemble in 2011 and Arca­dia by Unfurl in 2012. She is about to release her next album “Sleep­ing Giants”, also with Unfurl.