Nika Leoni

Nika Leoni

BIOGRAPHY
COMPOSITIONS
CDs
VIDEOS
NEWS POST

Nika Leoni, a Russian-American Composer and Soprano, has been praised to show “a distinctive talent of drawing profound musical expression from dramatic context” and “an exquisite skill in expressing the gamut of human emotions.”   Her diverse cultural and musical background enriches her style and empowers her versatility as a creative composer in numerous musical genres, including opera, vocal and chamber music, as well as in scoring for theater, dance, and film.

Characterized by critics as “an exceptionally talented composer and singer, with triumphant femininity manifest in her music as well as her appearance,” Nika has connected with her audiences by performing her own vocal compositions. Her performance of the operatic soliloquy Euridice was recently featured on WCNY (New York), KNVC (Nevada), and DelMarVa Public Radio (Maryland) as part of Foxtales and Fables on Feminine Fusion show.  She was also invited to present Part II of Euridice at the Opera America Center in New York as part of the Ladies First performance project (2016).  Recent chamber and vocal pieces include Prelude in the Steps of Rachmaninov for cello and piano, which was performed in November 2023 as part of Festival OSMOSE in Brussels (Belgium), Two Blake Songs for voice, clarinet, and viola, Dance Suite for Two Flutes, which was featured in the October 2021 issue of the Flute Examiner, and Sentimental Haiku Songs for SABT choir and piano.  Selections from the song cycle Six Love Songs by Sara Teasdale were performed by KC VITAs at their 2017 Summer Series in Kansas City and at the 2016 Calliope’s Call Concert Series in Boston, as well as by students at Poetry and Song Program at Mississippi State University’s Department of Music (2019). Latest commissions included a new song cycle Flowers, two Italian Christmas Carols written for The St. Louis Women’s Chorale and performed at “Christmas on the Hill” Concert at St. Ambrose Church in 2019, as well as the music score for an independent full feature film, for which she also composed, recorded, and produced the feature song. Nika’s album of her own arrangements of Russian Romances, titled Dark Eyes and released on Larion Records™, received high critical acclaim and is sold in music stores worldwide.

Currently, Nika is working on the completion of her one-act chamber opera for children The Secret of the Gold Queen which is based on an original fairytale and is scheduled to premiere for a public concert performance in 2024.  After its completion, Nika will resume her work on the new full-scale opera Flame and Shadow: The Passion and Pain of Sara Teasdale, based on the life of the renown American poet.  A documentary video about making of this opera that details its story, characters, musical themes, and other elements of the future production, was presented at the St. Lou Fringe Festival in St. Louis, MO in 2020 and 2021.

As an award-winning classical singer, Nika has performed on opera stages in the Czech Republic, Germany, Austria, and the USA, and appeared in concerts at Munich Philharmonie, Berlin Philharmonie, Wałbrzych Filharmonia Sudecka (Poland), Carnegie Hall (New York), as well as recorded with Prague Stern Orchestra (Czech Republic). She was a Regional Finalist in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and has received First Prizes and Awards from several prestigious singing competitions.

Nika is an experienced and passionate contributor to the nonprofit sector, having served on the boards of three nonprofit arts organizations since her move to St. Louis in 2014.  In 2015, Nika co-founded Make Music St. Louis, Inc. – a non-profit organization that brought the annual international music holiday, Make Music Day, to her new home city.  Since 2016, Make Music Day STL has helped many local musicians gain publicity and new audiences, as well as create connections with local venues.  In 2022, Nika co-founded a new St. Louis non-profit organization, In Her Sound, Inc., to serve the mission which she holds close to her heart – to represent and promote women in music.  Nika’s input at In Her Sound is dedicated to bringing to light and educating the audiences of our community about the work of women composers and performers across times, cultures, and genres, by organizing concerts and educational programs featuring music by women performed by women. Nika’s planned initiatives at In Her Sound were recognized this year by the Regional Arts Commission who awarded the organization with a generous grant to produce an all-women concert in March 2024. Most recently, Nika joined the board of Friends of Music Concerts St. Louis to assist with the organization’s revival as it resumes its concert programs after the Covid slowdown.

Euridice

Year: 2016

Duration (in minutes): 15 min

Difficulty: Medium (college/community)

Category: solo voice(s) with piano
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Description: Opera Soliloquy "Euridice" in two movements:
Part I "Reflessioni"
Part II "Ritrovamenti"

Dance Suite for Two Flutes

Year: 2016

Duration (in minutes): 0:05:10

Difficulty: High (professional)

Category: small chamber ensembles - 2 to 4 players

Instruments: any woodwind, flute
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Description: Dance Suite for Two Flutes in 3 movements: Saltarello, Sarabande, Lavolto

Six Love Songs by Sara Teasdale

Year: 2015

Duration (in minutes): 15 min

Difficulty: High (professional)

Category: solo voice(s) with piano
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Description: A six-song cycle for Soprano voice and piano, based on six poems from Sara Teasdale's book "Love Songs".
Less than the cloud to the wind
Faults
Pierrot
Wild Asters
To-Night
Message

BIOGRAPHY
Nika Leoni, a Russian-American Composer and Soprano, has been praised to show “a distinctive talent of drawing profound musical expression from dramatic context” and "an exquisite skill in expressing the gamut of human emotions."   Her diverse cultural and musical background enriches her style and empowers her versatility as a creative composer in numerous musical genres, including opera, vocal and chamber music, as well as in scoring for theater, dance, and film.

Characterized by critics as “an exceptionally talented composer and singer, with triumphant femininity manifest in her music as well as her appearance,” Nika has connected with her audiences by performing her own vocal compositions. Her performance of the operatic soliloquy Euridice was recently featured on WCNY (New York), KNVC (Nevada), and DelMarVa Public Radio (Maryland) as part of Foxtales and Fables on Feminine Fusion show.  She was also invited to present Part II of Euridice at the Opera America Center in New York as part of the Ladies First performance project (2016).  Recent chamber and vocal pieces include Prelude in the Steps of Rachmaninov for cello and piano, which was performed in November 2023 as part of Festival OSMOSE in Brussels (Belgium), Two Blake Songs for voice, clarinet, and viola, Dance Suite for Two Flutes, which was featured in the October 2021 issue of the Flute Examiner, and Sentimental Haiku Songs for SABT choir and piano.  Selections from the song cycle Six Love Songs by Sara Teasdale were performed by KC VITAs at their 2017 Summer Series in Kansas City and at the 2016 Calliope's Call Concert Series in Boston, as well as by students at Poetry and Song Program at Mississippi State University's Department of Music (2019). Latest commissions included a new song cycle Flowers, two Italian Christmas Carols written for The St. Louis Women's Chorale and performed at "Christmas on the Hill" Concert at St. Ambrose Church in 2019, as well as the music score for an independent full feature film, for which she also composed, recorded, and produced the feature song. Nika's album of her own arrangements of Russian Romances, titled Dark Eyes and released on Larion Records™, received high critical acclaim and is sold in music stores worldwide.

Currently, Nika is working on the completion of her one-act chamber opera for children The Secret of the Gold Queen which is based on an original fairytale and is scheduled to premiere for a public concert performance in 2024.  After its completion, Nika will resume her work on the new full-scale opera Flame and Shadow: The Passion and Pain of Sara Teasdale, based on the life of the renown American poet.  A documentary video about making of this opera that details its story, characters, musical themes, and other elements of the future production, was presented at the St. Lou Fringe Festival in St. Louis, MO in 2020 and 2021.

As an award-winning classical singer, Nika has performed on opera stages in the Czech Republic, Germany, Austria, and the USA, and appeared in concerts at Munich Philharmonie, Berlin Philharmonie, Wałbrzych Filharmonia Sudecka (Poland), Carnegie Hall (New York), as well as recorded with Prague Stern Orchestra (Czech Republic). She was a Regional Finalist in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and has received First Prizes and Awards from several prestigious singing competitions.

Nika is an experienced and passionate contributor to the nonprofit sector, having served on the boards of three nonprofit arts organizations since her move to St. Louis in 2014.  In 2015, Nika co-founded Make Music St. Louis, Inc. – a non-profit organization that brought the annual international music holiday, Make Music Day, to her new home city.  Since 2016, Make Music Day STL has helped many local musicians gain publicity and new audiences, as well as create connections with local venues.  In 2022, Nika co-founded a new St. Louis non-profit organization, In Her Sound, Inc., to serve the mission which she holds close to her heart – to represent and promote women in music.  Nika’s input at In Her Sound is dedicated to bringing to light and educating the audiences of our community about the work of women composers and performers across times, cultures, and genres, by organizing concerts and educational programs featuring music by women performed by women. Nika’s planned initiatives at In Her Sound were recognized this year by the Regional Arts Commission who awarded the organization with a generous grant to produce an all-women concert in March 2024. Most recently, Nika joined the board of Friends of Music Concerts St. Louis to assist with the organization’s revival as it resumes its concert programs after the Covid slowdown.
COMPOSITIONS

Euridice

Year: 2016

Duration (in minutes): 15 min

Difficulty: Medium (college/community)

Category: solo voice(s) with piano
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Description: Opera Soliloquy "Euridice" in two movements:
Part I "Reflessioni"
Part II "Ritrovamenti"

Dance Suite for Two Flutes

Year: 2016

Duration (in minutes): 0:05:10

Difficulty: High (professional)

Category: small chamber ensembles - 2 to 4 players

Instruments: any woodwind, flute
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Description: Dance Suite for Two Flutes in 3 movements: Saltarello, Sarabande, Lavolto

Six Love Songs by Sara Teasdale

Year: 2015

Duration (in minutes): 15 min

Difficulty: High (professional)

Category: solo voice(s) with piano
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Description: A six-song cycle for Soprano voice and piano, based on six poems from Sara Teasdale's book "Love Songs".
Less than the cloud to the wind
Faults
Pierrot
Wild Asters
To-Night
Message

CDs
VIDEOS
NEWS POST