Download the 2013 Festival Program Booklet
EMM: October 24-26, 2013 @
Kansas City Kansas Community College
2013 EMM Guest Artist: Kari Johnson
"…Johnson played beautifully, displaying a firm musicality and a flair for drama."
Kansas City Star
"…her sensitivities rather extraordinary, baroque while futuristic."
Kari Johnson is a pianist who specializes in new music and electronic music performance. Praised by critics for her "amazing musicality" and "flair for drama," Ms. Johnson works to create a dynamic, captivating experience for her audience. Like most pianists, Johnson began her training in traditional classical repertoire. Throughout her undergraduate and graduate studies, she developed an interest in playing rarely performed and highly stylized works, particularly music of the early baroque and late twentieth century. In 2008 she received an offer to participate in UMKC's Musica Nova as a scholarship member, and began to specialize in new music. This shift in aesthetic allows her to work with many composers, both "up-and-coming" and established. Ms. Johnson has performed at a variety of venues, including EMM, SEAMUS, EABD, the 2011 Thailand International Composition Festival, the Electro Acoustic Juke Joint, Montana State University, Western Michigan University, and Washington State University. In 2012 Ms. Johnson released her first commercial CD through the record label Irritable Hedgehog. This recording of Scott Blasco's Queen of Heaven has received positive critical review.
In addition to her active performing schedule, Ms Johnson is on the faculty of Avila University, where she teaches applied piano. She also maintains a large pre-college teaching studio, both privately and through the UMKC Community Music and Dance Academy. She is an active adjudicator and presenter, participating in events at Kansas City area schools and through the Kansas City Music Teachers Association.
Ms. Johnson is currently a Doctoral Candidate at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. She holds a Master of Music in Piano Pedagogy from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, a Master of Music in Piano Performance from Bowling Green State University, and a Bachelor's degree in Piano Performance and Piano Pedagogy from Central Missouri State University. She studied harpsichord with Charlotte Mattax, and her primary piano instructors include John McIntyre, Timothy Ehlen, Robert Satterlee, and Mia Hynes.