After an unexpectedly brief stint in New York City, Indiana native Jessamyn Anderson now resides in Nashville, TN. She was raised on Golden Age musicals and Disney Princesses, which fostered a love of other people's stories and telling them through song. With a songbook ranging from Puccini to Rodgers & Hammerstein and Cole Porter to Jason Robert Brown, she finds almost as much joy in soaring high notes as she does in making people laugh. Her only despairing thought is that life is simply not long enough to uncover all the beautiful music the world has to offer.
She found the perfect balance between musical theatre and classical music when she spent two summers with the Ohio Light Opera Company. While there, starring roles took her to Holland as Baroness Elly in Kálmán's The Little Dutch Girl, Paris as Claudine in Porter's Can-Can, the American seaside as Constance in Oh, Kay!, and small German villages as Lilli and the Maria Ziegler cover in Novello's The Dancing Years. She made up her own stories as a chorus member in eight other shows at OLO, her favorites being Brigadoon, Annie Get Your Gun, and Kiss Me, Kate. Her love of operetta remained with her in New York City, where she worked alongside several OLO colleagues with the Victor Herbert Renaissance Project. Jessamyn spent a summer singing at Opera in the Ozarks, and performed as Isabel in The Pirates of Penzance and an ugly stepsister and the Fairy Godmother in an outreach mashup opera of Cinderella.
After being awarded Most Likely to Win American Idol in her high school graduating class, Jessamyn decided to pursue a more classical route in her studies at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, where she graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Music in vocal performance. She studied with Scharmal Schrock, Mary Ann Hart, and Gary Arvin. During her senior year, she starred in IU Opera Theater’s production of South Pacific and was heralded as “all of the ‘cock-eyed optimist’ of a Nellie Forbush that you could wish for.” Her other IU Opera Theater credits include Cousin Hebe in H.M.S. Pinafore, and Margot in The Merry Widow as well as the choruses of The Last Savage and Falstaff. Also at IU, Jessamyn played the title role in the University Gilbert & Sullivan Society’s inaugural production, Iolanthe, and premiered the role of Mooch in Mooch the Magnificent with Re-Imagining Opera for Kids, an organization devoted to bringing opera to students in the Bloomington area. As an undergraduate, Jessamyn was placed in Sylvia McNair’s graduate opera workshop and was invited to sing at special events with renowned faculty members such as Kevin Murphy and Wolfgang Brendel.
Other favorite roles include Mrs. Dolly Levi in Hello, Dolly!, Aunt Eller in Oklahoma!, and Judy in I Married an Angel, a role that earned her Indianapolis Encore Award nominations for best female vocalist and best supporting actress. She is a frequent soloist with the Indiana Wind Symphony and has been invited to sing for the Governor of Indiana, the Boy Scouts of America, Relay for Life, Rotary clubs, and other community organizations. Alongside her music pursuits in Nashville, Jessamyn works as the director of communications for Love Good, an organization that accompanies young people and artists in the transformation of culture. She also owns a jewelry and personal styling business with Premier Designs, which she manages through her blog entitled Leading Lady. Off stage, Jessamyn can be found sweating up a storm at Jazzercise, wandering through a consignment store, or eating copious amounts of Parmesan cheese.