As a composer, Danika's work is inspired by her love of poetry and drama, and her unique perspective as a storyteller. Having started her musical education in piano at age 6, she earned a grade 9 level certificate through the Royal Conservatory of Music in 2005. She began composing seriously in 2014, and finds herself at home in art song and opera composition.
In 2016, she premiered her first song cycle, based on Lorna Crozier's infamous poetry cycle The Sex Lives of Vegetables with the Canadian Art Song Project, and she has since had her works performed in the Canadian Opera Company’s noon concert series, and at the National Sawdust with Bard University. She will make her compositional debut in Europe in November 2019, as part of a touring concert series featuring soprano Elisabeth Hetherington.
Her first opera is an interpretation of Ibsen's Hedda Gabler, and Danika looks forward to collaborating with Saskatoon Symphony Orchestra on a workshop of the piece. Selections from the opera debuted in the Richard Bradshaw Amphitheatre in 2018.
From 2018-19, Danika has been finishing her first collection of songs: 20 pieces based on poetry by Edna St. Vincent Millay, Tekahionwake (E. Pauline Johnson) and Lorna Crozier. The songbook, entitled First Fig Songbook after Millay's poem "First Fig", will be performed as part of the University of Toronto's Vocalis concert series by master and doctorate students in February 2020. This songbook was generously funded by the Saskatchewan Arts Board, and would not exist without their support!
These pieces are a part of First Fig Songbook (#firstfigsongbook),
a project that was generously funded by the Saskatchewan Arts Board.