Nikoletta Szoke

Nikoletta Szoke was conceived in Zalaegerszeg, Hungary in 1983. When her family moved to Budapest, she was just four years old and began her studies there. She was born to one of the Hungarian gipsy musical families (her father Sandor Szoke, a well-known cimbalom player), but she only began learning music at the age of 18. In 2002, Gabor Winand, a jazz singer, accepted her to a conservatory. After her first singing lesson, she began performing. After three years of performing and studying, she was accepted into the Shure Montreux Jazz Voice Competition. It took place at the Montreux Jazz Festival 2005. All jazz singers aged under 30 were eligible to compete. Nikoletta was invited to the competition and won the first prize as well as the public prize. Barbara Hendricks was the chairperson of the jury, and Randy Crawford was her assistant. As a student Julia Bikfalvy’s soprano diva Andrea Rost, Nikoletta began to learn classical singing in 2005. She attended the International Associaton for Jazz Education Conference (IAJE Conference) in New York in January 2006. She performed at both the New York Hilton as well as Dizzy’s Club at Lincoln Center. She was awarded the Lakatos Ablakos Dezso Hungarian jazz scholarship in 2006. This award is presented to three young Hungarian musicians each year. She has had a successful and growing performing career since the competition. Gramy Records, a Hungarian company, released her debut album, Golden Earrings, in October 2008. In January 2009 she also signed a contract with the Japanese label, Atelier Sawano, the latter launching in Japan “A Song For You”, Niki’s second album on 17th of the same month… bio by

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