Nikki Joshi

Nikki Joshi is a U.S. percussionist based in Toronto, ON where she recently completed the prestigious Rebanks Family Fellowship at the Glenn Gould School. She holds a Master’s Degree from McGill University, where she studied with Aiyun Huang. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree, Performer’s Certificate, Arts Leadership Certificate, and 2015 John Beck Percussion Scholarship from the Eastman School of Music, where she studied with Michael Burritt.

A passionate advocate for contemporary music, Nikki has worked closely with composers including Roger Reynolds, Vinko Globokar, Oliver Schneller, Steve Reich, Carlos Sanchez-Gutierrez, Phillipe Leroux, Jennifer Higdon, and Jo Kondo. In September 2019, she was invited to perform at the Transplanted Roots Percussion Research Symposium in Guanajuato, Mexico, where she presented “The Yellow Wallpaper,” a work of theatrical percussion composed by Matt Curlee with text by Charlotte Perkins Gilman.

About the Performance Piece

“The Yellow Wallpaper” (Excerpt) Text by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Adaptation and Setting by Matt Curlee

Based on Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s 1892 short story of the same name, “The Yellow Wallpaper” is a collaboration between percussionist Nikki Joshi and Rochester-based composer Matt Curlee, in consultation with Toronto-based theatre director Courtney Lancaster. With Gilman’s gothic text at the forefront, this work explores societal attitudes towards women’s mental health. “The Yellow Wallpaper” sees the percussionist donning a restrictive black Victorian dress and reciting Gilman’s revolutionary text, all while performing on a desk of domestic objects ranging from pitched candlesticks to teacups and knitting needles. This multidisciplinary performance seeks to blur the lines between contemporary music and dramaturgy, while inspiring future feminist artistic collaborations.

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