Music expresses that which cannot be said and on which it is impossible to be silent

Victor Hugo

About Nicole

Dr Nicole Panizza has emerged as one of the UK’s leading recitalists, scholars, and educators. A Fulbright Award recipient and Harvard University research fellow, she completed her postgraduate studies with Roger Vignoles at the Royal College of Music (London, UK). 

She has since gained international renown for her inter-medial research regarding American song, and the creative exploration of the text-music partnership.  Her specialism encompasses the life and work of the poet Emily Dickinson; incorporating performance, publication, and initiatives that promote international engagement and readership. 

She is the Artistic Director of The Panizza Dynasty Project; and is a creative partner of The International Center for American Music (Florence, Italy), and Emergence Music, in collaboration with soprano Nadine Benjamin. She currently holds the positions of Assistant Professor, Music (Coventry University, UK); Research Associate of TORCH/Oxford Song Network (University of Oxford, UK); the Women’s Song Forum, and is a board member of the Emily Dickinson International Society, the Lincolnshire International Chamber Music Festival, and the London Song Festival.

Nicole Panizza’s playing is as subtle and sophisticated as the music itself.
Will Yeoman
Limelight (Australia)



Syllables of Velvet, Sentences of Plush

The Emily Dickinson Music Project

This project provides an opportunity to explore and sample music in relationship to the American poetess Emily Dickinson. The featured material draws inspiration from renowned, to rarely-heard, song settings derived from her literary canon, and compositions from her own personal music folio. The project is designed to specifically track the evolution of musical thought and concept within Dickinson’s literary output – from a performer’s perspective. From every day, mundane, and repetitive activity (recipes, epigrammatic response, prayer) to a broader sweep of Dickinson-related themes (death, love, nature, eternity, and spirituality), select examples provide critical connections between often compartmentalised approaches to her life and work, and a valuable survey of literary forms, as translated through the medium of music.

Featured Publications

The Emily Dickinson Music Archive
Nature (2014)
Emergence – Emily Dickinson (2019) White Heat – Emily Dickinson in 1862: A Weekly Blog 
“Syllables of Velvet, Sentences of Plush: Emily Dickinson as Polyglot” – The Language of Emily Dickinson, Vernon Press (2020)
Reading in the Dark: A Performers Encounter with
Emily Dickinson, Routledge (2020)

Featured Poets, Composers & Performers

Emily Dickinson
Ella Jarman-Pinto
Juliana Hall
Aaron Copland
Luigi Zaninelli
Sylvia Glickman
Jane Ira Bloom


The American Art Song Project

This international collaborative project is devoted to the study and promotion of American art song. Whilst there has been much interest, discussion, and debate regarding the many sub-genres of American popular music there has been surprisingly little study of the ever-emergent pool of (and interest in) American art song composition and performance. This project seeks to address this balance, with the aim of affording American art song the attention that it so rightly deserves.

Select musical settings and publications provide an opportunity to observe not only a fascinating evolution of American literary style, both in theme and poetic device, but to also hear some of the finest American art songs of the 19th, 20th, and 21st centuries. This project presents a rare opportunity to explore the ways in which American culture and sensibility is reflected and expressed in literary terms, and how both composer and performer are inspired to then interpret these works through their own artistic filters. In bringing these musical narratives to life, this project seeks to establish a new forum for the way in which we read, hear and perform, and experience American art song.

Featured Poets & Composers

Toni Morrison, Andre Previn, Lee Hoiby, Lori Laitman, Samuel Barber, John Corigliano, Bob Dylan, James Agee, Lori Laitman, Samuel Barber, Luigi Zaninelli, Sylvia Glickman, David Matthews, T.S. Eliot, Mary Oliver, Lee Hoiby, Martin Luther King, Undine S. Moore, Florence B. Price, H. Leslie Adams, Frederic Prokosch



The Panizza Dynasty Project

Musical legacy of the Panizza family

This project explores and promotes the little-known international musical legacy of the Panizza family. Spanning three generations, from the early 19th century to the mid-20th century, their contribution to the world of international opera and ballet remains a fascinating and compelling study of musical and theatrical composition and practice. Giacomo, Giovanni Grazioso, and Ettore ‘Hector’ Panizza were at the forefront of European and American opera production; not only holding prominent artistic positions in such houses as La Scala; The Royal Opera, Covent Garden; The Metropolitan Opera, and Teatro Colón, but also writing many compositions that were regularly performed and equally admired by the industry and public alike. Through the sourcing, collation, curation, and performance of their compositions; and in the establishment of an archive that captures their profound contribution to conducting, musical direction, and philanthropy, this project seeks to firmly place the Panizza family as a significant Italian musical dynasty.

Featured Compositions

Aurora (1908), opera – Ettore Panizza
Ettore Fieramosca (1837), ballo – Giacomo Panizza
Il Findanzato del Mare (1897), opera – Ettore Panizza
La Collerica (1831), Farsa Giocosa in un Atto – Giacomo Panizza
Medio Evo Latina (1900), opera – Ettore Panizza
Odette (1847), ballo – Giacomo Panizza
Bizancio (1939), opera – Ettore Panizza
Faust (1848), ballo – Giacomo Panizza
Sonata in A minor (1946), violin, piano – Ettore Panizza
Ballabile con Variazioni nel ballo Ettore Fieramosca (1837), Eb clarinet, piano – Giacomo Panizza

Featured Productions & Recordings

Ring Cycle (1926), Wagner, La Scala – Ettore Panizza
Francesca da Rimini (1914) (premiere), Zandonai, Teatro Regio – Ettore Panizza
Turandot (1926), Puccini, La Scala – Ettore Panizza
Simon Boccanegra (1939), Verdi, The Metropolitan Opera – Ettore Panizza
The Marriage of Figaro (1940), Mozart, The Metropolitan Opera – Ettore Panizza
Tosca (1942), Puccini, La Scala – Ettore Panizza
La Traviata (1935), Verdi, The Metropolitan Opera – Ettore Panizza

Outside Emily

Experimental Dickinson

The subject of this project is the creation of a collaborative improvised multidisciplinary performance that invites the audience to consider the authentic temporal experience of a day in the life of the poet Emily Dickinson. The underpinning research focuses on her envelope writings, her daily domestic rituals, and her own sonic world in which she practised and performed, as evidenced in her folio of piano pieces and popular songs. Dickinson’s miniature envelope writings, or fragments, create small windows into her daily observations, feelings and experience. Repetitive duties such as cooking, sewing and ironing left small moments in-between for writing down her inspirations, feelings and reflections. Her accomplishment as a piano player involved another repetitive daily experience in the attendant practice and finger exercises. Ballads that she sang would segué into the rhythm of Dickinson’s poetry. The fragments could themselves be interpreted as small balladries sung in snatches.

Featured performances & publications

Experimental Dickinson: How can interdisciplinary improvised performance re-frame Emily Dickinson’s rhythms and tropes to communicate an innovative, ‘authentic’ interpretation of her own temporal experience? S.Hanna ed. and N. Panizza ed., Animation, UK. (2020)

In Other Motes, of Other Myths: The Emily Dickinson Performance Project (2018), ET101, Coventry University, UK

In Other Motes, of Other Myths: The Emily Dickinson Performance Project (2017), The ReLit Bibliotherapy Summer School, Worcester College, University of Oxford, UK

Butterflies off Banks of Noon (2017), The FT Oxford Literary Festival, Lincoln College, University of Oxford, UK

In Other Motes, of Other Myths: The Emily Dickinson Performance Project (2016), EDIS Triennial Conference, Cité Internationale de Universitairé, Paris, France



I Will Wait in These Poems

American War, Memoriam, and Remembrance

The US and the UK share an intimate history of intersections with conflict, war and battle. Conversely, their histories also reflect a social and cultural commemoration — through word, music and deed — gestures that remains undeniably present in response to current global challenge and conflict. This song project aims to capture and reflect the ways in which music and text can play a significant role in embodying the profoundly destructive, yet ultimately human reaction to these conflicts, providing a creative space for reflection and contemplation.

Featured Works

The Holy Sonnets of John Donne (excerpts) (2014), by Juliana Hall, poetry by John Donne

Chanting to Paradise (excerpts) (1997), by Libby Larsen, poetry by Emily Dickinson

Four Walt Whitman Songs (excerpts) (1942, 1947), by Kurt Weill, poetry by Walt Whitman

Nightsongs (excerpts) (2010), by H. Leslie Adams, poetry by Hughes, Delaney, and Johnson, dedicated to Jouvanca Jean‐Baptiste

Aftermath (2002), by Ned Rorem, poetry by Amwell, Blake, Marston, Housman, Arnold, Eberhart, Hollander, Shakespeare, Landor, Barrett Browning, Borges, Jarrell, and Rukeyer

Featured Poets & Composers

Emily Dickinson, John Donne, Juliana Hall, Libby Larsen, Walt Whitman, Kurt Weill, H. Leslie Adams, Langston Hughes, Clarissa Scott Delaney, James Weldon Johnson, Ned Rorem, John Scott of Amwell, William Blake, E. Housman, John Hollander, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Muriel Rukeyer, William Shakespeare, Richard Eberhart, Jorge Luis Borge, Randall Jarrell, Walter Savage Landor


Contemporary Australian Chamber Music

“Being far from home has been a source of reflection for many artists over the centuries. As Australians, returning to the Old World, we relish the opportunity of bringing works that we grew up with to new audiences, whilst also sharing critical aspects of our cultural heritage and outlook.”

Internationally-acclaimed, Ozmosis consists of Australian musicians living and working in Europe and the UK. Founded in Cork, Ireland in 2005 by Nicole Panizza, Katrina Emtage and Ilse de Ziah, Ozmosis are committed to exploring and promoting the best of new and existing contemporary chamber music that Australia has to offer.

This research project highlights composers indigenous to Australia. It seeks to create a record of new or rarely heard works and to establish a new model of chamber music programming and performance by showcasing works that highlight national ‘identity’ and specific artistic qualities pertinent to Australian cultural form. By exposing little-known musical works, and then transporting them into a “European” context, this recital program seeks to discover new ways for this unique cultural voice to engage in ‘dialogue’ with others, with the intention of creating a model for contemplating and constructing national identity. This dialogue is expressed through the partnerships of sound, text and performance.

Featured Works

The Big Dry – clarinet, cello, piano – Kelvin (2009)
Threnody – solo cello – Sculthorpe (1991-2)
Chiaroscuro I – piano – Sutherland (1967)
Russian Rag – flute, cello, piano – Kats-Chernin (2001)
Sobben – Nepitanc –clarinet, cello, piano – Kelvin (2000)
feed it all it needs 1-4 – clarinet – Plankenthorn (2009)
Lahara’s Stream – cello, piano – Howlett (1978)
Colours of the Sea – flute, cello, piano – Kats-Chernin (2004)
Snow, Moon and Flowers – piano – Sculthorpe (1972)
Spur the Snakes! – clarinet/cello – Free improvisation
After Dark – cello, piano – Howlett (2012) Sonus Dulcis – clarinet, cello, piano – Pertout (2000)

Featured Composers

Lis Kelvin
Peter Sculthorpe
Andrian Pertout
Margaret Sutherland
John Plankenthorn
May Howlett
Elena Kats-Chernin


...simply scintillating and elegantly reflective.
David DeBoor Canfield
Fanfare Magazine (USA)


Emergence by Nicole Panizza & Nadine Benjamin
Nature by Nicole Panizza


Nadine Benjamin & Nicole Panizza
Stone Records — 2019

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Jane Sheldon & Nicole Panizza
Phosphor Records — 2014

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