Claudia Jardine (she/her) is a writer, musician, editor and translator based in Ōtautahi, Aotearoa. She has published two best-selling collections of poetry: The Temple of Your Girl in AUP New Poets 7 (2020) and BITER (2023). Her debut music release, North EP, came out in 2019 and both of its singles topped national indie radio charts. She has been performing as a poet and singer since 2011.


Image credit: Petra Mingneau

Official bio

Claudia was born in Te Tihi-O-Maru (Timaru), Aotearoa, in 1995 and grew up in Ōtautahi (Christchurch). Her ancestors are from the British Isles and the Maltese Archipelago. As the youngest member of an outgoing and musical family, from an early age she strove to distinguish herself from the pack by writing her own songs. In 2011 at 15 years old she won first place at the Canterbury finals of Smokefreerockquest, along with awards for lyrics and musicianship. The next year, she won the competition’s National APRA Lyric Award.

Seeking more gigs and opportunities to develop her writing skills, Claudia moved to Pōneke (Wellington) in 2014. In the same year she earned the title of Best Songwriter at the Battle of the Bands National Championship. After a successful crowdfunding campaign she independently released folk-pop North EP in 2019 with the help of Taavi Paomets, who produced the EP and contributed to the instrumentation of the tracks. Her first single ‘Hide’ reached #1 on RDU’s Te Ahi Top Ten and #3 on The Student Radio Network’s Top 10. The second, ‘Erase Me’, also took out #1 on Te Ahi Top Ten.

All the while, Claudia had also been experiencing success as a writer and slam poet. In 2013 she competed at the national final of Rising Voices and had her first taste of being published on the page in ReDraft: Mad Honey. She went on to study as an undergraduate student at the International Institute of Modern Letters (IIML) and her work featured in literary journals such as Starling, Mimicry, Sport, takahē, Sweet Mammalian and Landfall. She was awarded the Touchstone Prize for Literary Translation in 2015 and 2017 for translations of ‘Catullus 61′ and passages of Euripides’ Alcestis, respectively.

She graduated from Victoria University of Wellington | Te Herenga Waka with a Master of Arts (Classics) in 2020, where she won a Marsden Grant for Masters scholarship and the 2020 Alex Scobie Research Prize for her Masters thesis on intertextuality in the Alexiad of Anna Komnene. Prior to her Masters degree, she completed a Bachelor of Arts with Honours and wrote an Honours-level thesis on hickies in the poetry of Tibullus and Propertius.

While completing her Masters degree, Claudia’s first poetry chapbook The Temple of Your Girl was published in AUP New Poets 7 (2020) alongside chapbooks by Rhys Feeney and Ria Masae. The next year, after a move back to Ōtautahi, she was awarded a three-month long creative residency at The Arts Centre Te Matatiki Toi Ora and a micro residency at Verb Festival 2021. In 2022 she was crowned Ōtautahi Poetry Slam Champion.

Her latest book BITER was published by Auckland University Press on 13 April 2023 and was long-listed for the Mary and Peter Biggs Award for Poetry at the 2024 Ockham New Zealand Book Awards. BITER made the Nielsen BookScan New Zealand bestseller list. Liz Breslin, writing for Landfall Review Online, describes the collection as “a contemporary collection of auguries, examining our present moment, and it’s one that readers will keep returning to for the worlds it contains.”

Claudia is also an editor and occasionally writes reviews and prose. She was a member of the online youth journal Starling’s editorial committee for issues 12-15, and co-edited The Map, the in-house publication of Ōtautahi’s Movement Art Practice. As a critic, she has written reviews for Pukapuka Aotearoa and Flat City Field Notes. She works in the arts sector as an event coordinator and creative writing teacher. Her full CV can be found on LinkedIn.

Claudia is proud to be a member of Read NZ Te Pou Muramura’s Writers in Schools programme. If your class is interested in receiving a visit from Claudia, click here to view her Writer’s File and apply for a visit.

Claudia is a regular performer at poetry events and is now back in the garage writing music with a band. At 28 she is the author of two poetry collections, both best-selling, a poetry slam champion and an indie radio chart topper. Just don’t ask her to drive a manual.


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