Over the past 15 years, mezzo soprano Nicole Smede has proven herself a versatile vocalist and performer with experience spanning diverse genres. Nicole has performed and recorded repertoire from classical, theatre, rock and contemporary music through to film and other media. Her voice has been heard on national youth broadcaster Triple J as well as globally on award-winning film scores, and graced the stages of City Recital Hall, MONA FOMA festival to art galleries and venues across Australia.
A graduate from the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, Nicole’s voice has an unusual timbre making it possible for her to traverse genres from experimental, opera and folk music. She has performed as a vocalist with The Song Company and the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, along with a number of Sydney based outfits including country pop inspired The Proposition, on keys and vocals with electro grunge duo Juniper and indie 5-piece The Shipwrecked.
With a voice described as haunting and rich in tone and depth, Nicole is a rare performer, equally at home singing classical repertoire to experimental improvisations. Her passion for music and wide ranging musical influences has led to a number of collaborations. Nicole is the lead vocalist for progressive indie chamber group Hinterlandt. Their second album as a 5-piece, seven tales will be released in june 2020 ahead of a national tour.
A collaborator with award-winning composer Damien Lane, Nicole’s vocals are featured in a number of film scores including Ivan Sen's 2016 film Goldstone, which won 'best music' and 'best film' at the FilmCritics' Circle of Australia Awards, and APRA Award winning film score '1919', broadcast on ABC in 2015.
A passionate advocate for arts education, Nicole has conducted vocal workshops with The NSW Department of Education, The Arts Unit, the NSW Combined Schools Choir, The Song Company and Wollongong City Council. Nicole is currently working with Red Room Poetry as a commissioned poet and educator for the Poetry in First Languages Program conceived and led by Gunai poet and author, Kirli Saunders. Proud of her Worimi ancestry, Nicole is grateful for the gift to work with Traditional Owners, Custodians and First Nations students, reviving language through the creation of songs and poetry.
Centring on a reconnection and reclamation of her ancestry and country, Nicole has performed her poetry and song at Parliament House, Canberra, national Multicultural festival, canberra and is collaborating on a play for Merrigong Theatre in June 2020. Nicole’s poetry has been published in anthology Never Heard of Them, Baby Teeth Journal, on ferries across Sydney Harbour and has work in an upcoming anthology of First Nations poetry Guwayu: For All Times to be published through Magabala Books mid 2020.
Selected Film Credits
Goldstone (Feature Film) - Vocalist on additional music tracks 2016. Original score: Ivan Sen Additional music: Damien Lane Opening Night Film 2016 Sydney Film Festival
1919 (Short Film) – Vocalist on original score 2015 Composer: Damien Lane WINNER, BEST MUSIC FOR A SHORT FILM, 2015 APRA SCREEN MUSIC AWARDS
Happy (Short Film, 2015); Blue (Short Film, 2012); Inferno (Short Film, 2011); The Man With Wings (Short Film, 2011)
2020 - hinterlandt, seven tales, art as catharsis
2019 - Nicole smede, gugara kuragia (single), commissioned by red room poetry
2018 - The Wayward Doves, half a cow records
2016 - Hintelandt, Ode To Doubt. Art as Catharsis
2016 - The Shipwrecked, Sending You Into The Sun (from the feature film Goldstone)
2014 - The Proposition, Edge of the Dancefloor. Half a Cow Records.
2011 - Juniper, Passive Aggressive.
2010 - The Shipwrecked, Chasing Shadows (EP). Tumnus Records.
2008 - The Shipwrecked, Self-titled album. Tumnus Records.
2006 - Plastic Palace Alice, Six Songs of Sixpence (EP).