Electronic cellist/composer Cris Derksen now lives in cosmopolitan Toronto, a far trek from Treaty 8 territory where she was raised. Musically, Derksen is still inspired and informed by northern Alberta and her half-Cree and half-Mennonite heritage. Whether performing solo or composing and collaborating with symphonies, theatres, choirs, creators and dance companies around the world, Derksen challenges listeners, and players, to join in her explorations. Her compositions are open invitations for powwow beats, loops, old-school hip-hop, orchestral instruments and natural elements to commune. Modern, classical, fun, exciting and wholly unique, Derksen uses an arsenal of modern day effects and technology to coax out of her beloved cello the delightfully unexpected: the sounds of seagulls, a beating heart, or ice cracking beneath a chilling, haunting wind. Derksen has succeeded in taking the cello "outside of the concert hall and... to a more relatable level." Like the indestructible carbon-fibre from which her cello is made, Derksen's spirit, mission and infectious enthusiasm are just as resilient.
Biography by Chantal Vitalis