Nikki Yanofsky Biography

Nikki Yanofsky is a 16-year-old musical prodigy. Since her debut at the 2006 Montreal International Jazz Festival, where she won the hearts of the 100,000+ audience, Nikki has never looked back. She was the youngest singer ever on a Verve Records release when she recorded “Airmail Special” for the Ella Fitzgerald tribute album, We All Love Ella: Celebrating the First Lady of Song, alongside such musical luminaries as Etta James, Linda Ronstadt, Diana Krall and Natalie Cole. She has also recorded the swing-era classic, “Stompin’ at the Savoy” with Grammy Award-winning artists Herbie Hancock and for Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s audio book, On the Shoulders of Giants. Also, in the realm of popular music, Nikki was asked to record “Gotta Go My Own Way” for Disney’s smash hit High School Musical 2. The song was included in French and English on the Canadian release of the soundtrack, and in the bonus features of the worldwide DVD release. Nikki has also starred with renowned hip-hop artist Wyclef Jean on episodes of PBS' current version of The Electric Company and has been broadcast internationally on PBS’s youth talent showcase From the Top. In 2008, Nikki released Ella… of Thee I Swing – a live CD/DVD package recorded in Montreal. Garnering critical acclaim, it earned Nikki two Juno nominations including New Artist of the Year and Vocal Jazz Album of the Year.

Most recently, Nikki was a featured artist at the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games held in Vancouver. Performing at the opening and closing ceremonies of the Olympics as well as the opening ceremony of the Paralympics, Nikki was introduced to a world-wide audience. Nikki was also chosen to sing “I Believe,” the anthem of Canada’s Broadcast Consortium. Written by Stephan Moccio and Alan Frew, this song quickly became a #1 hit on iTunes Canada and the Billboard Canada Top 100 chart. The single had the highest first-week sales of any Canadian artist in SoundScan history and was certified quadruple-platinum. That same week, Ella… of Thee I Swing went back to the top of the iTunes Canada Jazz Albums Chart and her single “I Got Rhythm” went to the top of the iTunes Canada Jazz Songs Chart. This was the first time since the inception of digital downloading that an artist has held these #1 positions concurrently.

Nikki has used her budding fame to help the underprivileged – becoming an ambassador for the Montreal Children’s Hospital, The Children's Wish Foundation and MusiCounts. Nikki has also recently joined her fellow Canadian artists in recording K’Naan’s “Wavin’ Flag” for Young Artists for Haiti. Being sold on iTunes as a single and video, the proceeds will directly impact the lives of children, families and communities in Haiti through the relief and rebuilding efforts of Free the Children, War Child Canada and World Vision Canada. The local, national and international charity events that Nikki has been involved with to date have raised well over $10 million.

Already a veteran of the touring circuit, Nikki has played to sold-out crowds at jazz festivals in Montreal, Toronto, Sapporo and Montego Bay, played Carnegie Hall, The Kennedy Center and Avery Fischer Hall with renowned composer and conductor, Marvin Hamlisch and has performed before full houses at Dizzy's in New York City's Jazz at Lincoln Center, the famed Catalina's Jazz Club in Los Angeles and even Tokyo’s historic Kabuki-za.

Nikki’s first studio album, Nikki, will be released by Decca Records in the spring of 2010. Produced by 15-time Grammy Award-winning producer Phil Ramone, it features new arrangements of classic jazz songs as well as some of Nikki’s first original music. It includes collaborations with fellow Canadian Ron Sexsmith and Grammy Award-winning songwriter Jesse Harris as well as a song written for Nikki by Feist.

The summer of 2010 is already filling up with international tour dates. Canadian, US, UK, Japanese and European tours are all in the works including her fifth straight appearance at the Montreal International Jazz Festival.
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