NL: What piece of advice would you give to your previous self?
NW: So many things! In terms of music making I would say that if it doesn’t feel right, then don’t do it! It’s absolutely fine and perfectly healthy to listen and analyze the performances of other artists but a phrase or a particular fingering etc has to feel natural and suitable to you, otherwise it will never be convincing in performance.
NL: If you had the funding to do whatever you wanted, what would you do?
NW: Estonia recently outlined and put funding aside for an ambitious plan to ensure every child has access to a musical instrument. What a fantastic goal this is and one that would be incredible to replicate elsewhere.
NL: In an alternate dimension where you play an instrument that you do not currently play, what instrument would this be and why would you choose this instrument?
NW: I’m drawn to sounds that are full of character and expression. This of course has much more to do with the player than the instrument as it’s possible, for example, for two highly experienced professional bassoonists or cellists to sound so wildly different from one another. An answer for this question gets complicated for me as I intrinsically link each instrument to a particular player who’s sound I love. Then it becomes a question of repertoire. That’s the long answer! The short answer would probably be French horn and cello for orchestral instruments, but most of all voice because here there is no barrier for personality in the tone. It’s also probably one of the reasons that ‘the four last songs’ by Strauss, which includes a beautiful violin solo, is my favourite piece.
NL: Do you have a favourite film score?
NW: I’m a big fan of John Williams, not only as a composer but also as a conductor and musician. His ability to raise the overall experience of a movie is absolutely incredible. One particular score that’s always been a favourite though is Out of Africa by John Barry.
NL: How do you stay motivated as a musician?
NW: Surround yourself with other musicians and artists that inspire you. Never be musically arrogant, there are always more things to learn and new ways to approach a piece.
Violinist Nicholas Wright took to the stage with soprano Robyn Driedger-Klassen and pianist Grace Huang on April 10, 2018 at The Fox Cabaret.
Pianist Nicole Linaksita stepped into the spotlight with clarinetist Liam Hockley and Composer & Sound Artist Nancy Tam for Emerge on Main on April 24, 2018 at The Fox Cabaret.