Dami Imhas returned to her roots with a new album of jazz standards – the music she first discovered during her studies at theQueensland Conservatorium Griffith University.

Fresh off the back of a triumphant performance at the Commonwealth Games closing ceremony, the multi-platinum artist is now in the middle of a national tour.

“I see this album as a bridge from my past to my future,” she said.

“I wanted to explore the kind of music I used to do before the TheX Factor and Eurovision.

“I feel like its time to show more of myself as an artist.

“In fact, I first learnt to sing many of these songs while I was studying at the Con.

“For me, this is where my whole journey as a singer began.”

The Masters of Music Studies graduate shot to stardom after winning The X Factor in 2013 and represented Australia in the 2016 Eurovision Song Contest.

Dami said the global exposure that came with her dazzling Eurovision performance made her re-evaluate her career.

“After Eurovision I had a big opportunity to showcase my music across the world, and it really forced me to think what I wanted to do in 10 years, and come up with a long term plan,” she said.

“I felt a real pull to reconnect with my roots, and connect all my experiences – and that meant returning to jazz.”


Dami’s current tour reflects her change of direction – the massive arenas have been replaced by a series of intimate gigs around the country.

“This tour is different for me – I’m purposefully keeping things small and playing in tiny venues,” she said.

“I want it to be a really intimate, boutique experience, and I’ll be playing with a small jazz quintet – it’s about really connecting with the people in the crowd.”

The powerhouse singer credits her time at the Queensland Conservatorium with shaping her into a seasoned performer.

“My time at the Con helped massively,” she said.

“A lot of people like to believe that X Factor was my first time on stage, but I’ve spent my whole life doing music – first at the Young Con, then doing my Masters in jazz vocals.

“While I was at the Con, I was lucky enough to be mentored by Irene Bartlett – she taught me everything I know about the biology of how the voice works and how to look after my instrument.

“Sheinspired me to be a grounded artist – to be yourself, while being a success.

“My experience on the X Factor isn’t for everyone – for me, it worked out well, because I found it hard to push myself forward and promote myself.

“But having proper training and great mentors and teachers is so important.

“It has helped me have more longevity as an artist.”

Dr Irene Bartlett remembers Dami discovering jazz at the Queensland Conservatorium.

“She came into the Masters program as an incredibly accomplished piano player who’d taught herself how to sing,” she said.

“She wanted to learn how to really belt, and her own material was quite pop / gospel.

“She was introduced to jazz here at the Con, so it’sheartwarming to see that she’s rediscovered her love of jazz repertoire.”

Queensland Conservatorium Director Professor Scott Harrison said the Con had produced many remarkable vocalists who had transformed the Australian music scene — from Dami to Katie Noonan and Megan Washington.

“Dami is one of many talented alumni making their mark on the world stage,” he said.

“We remain the dream destination for aspiring young musicians from around the world — this has been confirmed by our position among the top 50 performing arts programs in the world, and our recent ranking as the country’s leading creative arts school.”