Jenny Barnes (born Adelaide, Australia, 1981) is a vocalist, performer, language teacher and playground worker based in Melbourne. Barnes achieved a Masters Degree in Applied Linguistics and a Bachelor of Music in Jazz Performance and has studied under the tutelage of predominant vocalists in New York City, Lisboa, Berlin and Oslo. Barnes has travelled extensively throughout rural Australia, Western Europe and Scandinavia gathering fuel for her work into the musicality of language. Jennyʼs work has featured alongside that of Meredith Monk (USA), Jaap Blonk (Netherlands), Fatima Miranda (Spain) and Amanda Stewart (Australia).
Barnes examines and mimics youtube recordings of mammals, domestic pets and birds to achieve an extensive and diverse vocal capacity. Barnes then studies the rhythmic cadences and pitch modulations of languages and applies her findings to an improvisatory musical context.
Barnes considers her position to be one of great privilege, continuously striving to exercise her body, voice and presence in each context she places herself amongst. The freedom she has to move between communities is not one she takes for granted. She is a devoted listener who offers an output of energy, devoid of linguistic meaning in the hope of expressing her interrogations of her own place and position.