Born: 1994 Primary Instrument: Vocalist
Yanofsky is a 15-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 Will.i.am 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 Musical2. 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.
Along with playing to sold-out crowds at jazz festivals in Montreal, Toronto and Montego Bay, Nikki has been on a multi-city ‘pops concert’ tour with renowned composer and conductor Marvin Hamlisch, including appearances at Carnegie Hall, The Kennedy Center, and major concert venues in Seattle, San Diego and Milwaukee. As well, she has performed before full houses at Dizzy's in New York City's Jazz at Lincoln Center, and the famed Catalina's Jazz Club in Los Angeles.
Nikki has used her budding fame to help the underprivileged as well, becoming an ambassador for the Montreal Children’s Hospital, TheChildren's Wish Foundation and Musicounts, Canada's music education charity associated with the Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS), whose mission is to ensure that children in Canada have access to a comprehensive music program through their school. The charity events that Nikki has been involved with to date have raised well over $10 million for local, national and international charities.
On September 23, 2008, Nikki released the CD and DVD package Ella… of Thee I Swing, which captured a memorable performance recorded before a full house at Place des Arts in Montreal, Canada. This album has garnered critical acclaim from many notable publications and, in 2009, earned Nikki two Juno nominations including New Artist of the Year and Vocal Jazz Album of the Year.
In the summer of 2009, Nikki completed a Canadian Jazz Festival tour including a special free outdoor concert for the 30th Anniversary of the Montreal International Jazz Festival. She has since visited the Far East twice, presenting numerous concert and promotional dates in Japan and South Korea.
Currently, she is putting the finishing touches on her first full-album studio release entitled New to Me with 14-time Grammy Award-winning producer, Phil Ramone. The album is due to be released in spring, 2010.