Structured Improvisation for two mouths amplified (June 2018)

Composed and Performed by Niki Johnson and Laura Schwartz for New Music On the Point Open Mic Night 2018.

Niki Johnson is currently in the fourth year of her Bachelor of Percussion Performance at the Sydney Conservatorium of music. She was a recipient of the Greenberg Gurney Jensen Scholarship for the first year of her studies there. Following her pre-tertiary graduation in 2014 she was a top 10 finalist in the ACTcent showcase for musical excellence, and was a recipient of the ACT Board of Studies Recognition of Excellence Award. Her current musical focus is on modern small chamber repertoire and new composer works. Her performance history includes the Tapsapce Publications professional recording of Robert Oetomo’s Percussion quartet arrangement of Somewhere Over the Rainbow, recording at Trackdown Fox studios for the Lego Batman film, performing in masterclasses at ANAM for Steven Schick, and performing in a percussion ensemble as the opening act to the Sydney Symphony Orchestra in the annual Sydney Festival.

She spent late June 2018 in Vermont, USA working with various composers at the New Music On the Point Festival. Amy Williams was artistic director and Jan Williams was percussion tutor. It was an amazing experience where she was given the opportunity to experiment with sound and work with composers and other talented musicans from around America and the world including the Jack Quartet, Tony Arnold, Juraj Kojš, and Room Full of Teeth.

She has been a keen performer of new compositional works, and alongside her percussion endeavours is in the process of releasing a solo vocal album and is the singer in a local Neo Soul Band Blue Fox.

In addition to her work as a classical percussionist, she is training with Sydney’s Taikoz organisation to learn about the traditional Japanese drumming of Taiko. As a participant in the advanced class run by Taikoz she learns the techniques, styles and traditions of the drumming and occasionally perform alongside Taikoz staff.