Bio 

D. Riley Nicholson is a composer, pianist, and arts management professional, equally committed to creating original work and supporting performing arts organizations through management, administration, and governance. 

 

Nicholson has composed and performed for a wide range of ensembles and performance venues including music for contemporary ballet, theater, orchestral music, wind band, film, chamber music, vocal music, and electronic music. Fascinated and committed to working with artists outside of music as well as within, collaborations include original music for Dance Film SF, Post:Ballet, Switchboard Music, Amaranth Quartet, Hot Air Music Festival, David Herrera Performance Company, Ballet Memphis's Cecily Khuner, Three Penny Theater, Cello Street Quartet, and many other talented artists and organizations. 


Nicholson was the recipient of a Horizons Foundation grant in support of his work One, for large string orchestra, which headlined Hot Air Music Festival in 2016. In 2017, his music was featured on Not Art Records Mixtape. Nicholson received another Horizons grant in support of his full-length Shimmer production which toured nationally in 2018. Later that year, he was honored as the CAPMT Distinguished Composer of the Year. In 2019, Joshua Kosman described his performance of the music of Julius Eastman as a "powerful, ingeniously wrought rendition." (SF Chronicle). Recently, Nicholson finished a new commission for pianists Sarah Cahill and Regina Myers.

 

Nicholson supports forward-thinking performing arts organizations in management and production to create powerful artistic experiences. With a focus on organizational inventiveness, artistic innovation, and human-centered community building, Nicholson has fostered growth and connectedness in the arts through his roles as Project Manager for the Center for New Music, Marketing Consultant for Dance Film SF, and his leadership on the Board of Directors at Berkeley Ballet Theater and Post:Ballet. 

 

Riley has an M.M. in composition from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, a B.M. in percussion performance, and a B.A. in psychology from the University of Memphis.

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D. Riley Nicholson is a composer, pianist, and arts management professional. Nicholson has composed and performed for a wide range of ensembles and performance venues including music for contemporary ballet, theater, orchestral music, wind band, film, chamber music, vocal music, and electronic music. Nicholson was the recipient of a Horizons Foundation grant in support of his work One, for large string orchestra, which headlined Hot Air Music Festival. Nicholson received another Horizons grant in support of his full-length Shimmer production which toured nationally in 2018. Later that year, he was honored as the CAPMT Distinguished Composer of the Year. In 2019, Joshua Kosman described his performance of the music of Julius Eastman as a "powerful, ingeniously wrought rendition." (SF Chronicle). Recently, Nicholson finished a new commission for pianists Sarah Cahill and Regina Myers. 

D. Riley Nicholson     drileyn (at)  gmail.com​

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