A B O U T
Vidita Kanniks is a multi-faceted vocalist specializing in ensemble music, historical performance and cross-cultural work. Equally at home with her background in Indian Classical music and her Western classical training she strives to represent both sides authentically in her unique artistic identity.
In the 2020-21 season, Vidita has been keeping engaged with a number of virtual performance initiatives including her recorded work featured through San Francisco-based baroque ensemble, Voices of Music and her involvement with 'How it's Musically Made', a project/podcast series aimed to re-define the art song genre through remote collaboration and commissioned new works reflecting the pandemic era.
Vidita spent the 2019-20 season in residence with the UK-based ensemble VOCES8 as a member of their US Scholars Program. In 2019 She was a recipient of the Project Inclusion Vocal Fellowship through the Grant Park Music Festival where she was seen several times in recital, most notably as part of the Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concert Series at the Chicago Cultural Center. She also appeared in concert with the Grant Park Chorus and Orchestra. Vidita later joined Seraphic Fire and fellow young artists at the Aspen Music Festival’s Professional Choral Institute in Colorado. In previous years Vidita has been a Young Artist at Songfest, Los Angeles (2017) and the Académie Internationale d’Été de Nice (2016).
While pursuing her graduate education in Montreal (2018-19), Vidita sang professionally with the Choir of St. Andrew and St. Paul and the Serenata à St. Jean Music Series. She interpreted the role of Nunzia in Opera McGill's 2019 production of La Liberazione di Ruggiero (Francesca Caccini). A native of Cincinnati, Vidita is a recurring soloist with the Cincinnati Bach Ensemble. Other ensemble affiliations include the choir of St. Peter in Chains Cathedral, Collegium Cincinnati and Coro Volante, an ensemble dedicated to recording and publishing discography of living composers.
Vidita has been recognized by audiences around the globe for her collaborative work with her father, Dr. Kanniks Kannikeswaran. She has studied both within the Hindustani and Carnatic musical traditions, particularly in the Dhrupad style of vocal technique and interpretation. Her unprecedented interdisciplinary work in this area paired with her sensitive musicianship and affinity for language has led her to gain attention through social media content and live performances across the United States and internationally. Some notable appearances include her feature at the India Dans Festival in the Hague, Netherlands (2013), her solo performance at Madison Square Garden, NYC for Indian Prime Minister Modi’s inaugural ceremony (2014), her workshop/recital for the DesiYup house-concert series in Rotterdam, Netherlands and her interview with Ashanti Omkar of BBC Asia in the UK (2016). Her voice was commissioned for a solo album of Indian classical repertoire in collaboration with Dr. Kanniks by the SVBF Foundation and Sarada Hindu Temple of Stroudsberg, PA (2015). The album, titled 'Sarada', was officially released on digital platforms in 2020. Her voice is also featured exclusively on the two-part album, Vismaya – an Indo-Celtic musical journey (2008), a first-ever archival of the 39 colonial tunes of 19th century Carnatic composer Mutthusvami Dikshitar.
A passionate educator, Vidita has been a guest lecturer for several universities and organizations including the University of Cincinnati (CCM), McGill University, Reed College, The Ohio Music Teachers Association, Vallejo Choral Society among others, leading workshops on Indian Classical Music and its global impact. She has also been featured on the web podcasts 'Are We All Met?' and 'Redefining ABCD' on the topics of multi-disciplinary music, art in the digital age and the Indian-American identity.
Vidita holds Bachelor’s degrees in Vocal Performance and Music History from the University of Cincinnati (CCM) with a minor in French, and a Master’s degree in Early Music Performance from McGill University in Montreal, Québec. She is a member of Early Music America's Emerging Professional Leadership Council and is also a contributing author for online journal 'American Kahani'. She currently resides in Cincinnati where she is active as a teaching artist and vocal instructor in both Western and Indian classical disciplines.