Curriculum Vitae 

Download CV in PDF format here

ALEX KOI
BORN IN SYRACUSE, NY, b. 1993 | BASED IN DETROIT

Vocalist | Composer & Improviser | Interdisciplinary Performance Artist

BIO

Alex Koi's vocal and compositional style encompasses a versatility to be reckoned with. From jazz to the avant-garde, industrial to operatic, experimental electronic to punk, her influences ring just as organically and significantly from one sonic world to the next. "Hauntingly beautiful, visceral, [&] enchanting", her music builds "toward some fantastic, nightmarish opera of sorts", (Current Magazine).

Koi developed a taste for improvisation and composition at an early age while recording sounds, song, screams, and poetry in the quiet quarters of her parents' linen closet. The artistry of her multiple projects and interdisciplinary collaborations has been propelling her as an innovative force in the Detroit creative music scene and beyond. She writes multi-sectional, original compositions for her eponymous project and is one-fourth of the glitch-electronic ensemble saajtak along with Simon Alexander-Adams, Ben Willis, and Jonathan Taylor.

A sought-after collaborator, she has worked with artists across the creative board including electronic artist Joo Won Park, Detroit improvising musician James Cornish, hip-hop artist MC Kadence, and multiple dance soloists and ensembles across Michigan. She has shared stages with Xiu Xiu, Gaelynn Lea, Vicky Chow, New Music Detroit, and more, with performances at the DSO Cube, Trinosophes, The Detroit Institute of Arts, The Power Center for Performing Arts, and the Museum of Contemporary Art and across the country. 

Originally from Pittsburgh, Koi moved to Detroit after graduating from the University of Michigan with a Jazz Studies B.M.A. with Voice Concentration in 2015. 

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EDUCATION

Jazz Studies B.M.A. with Voice Concentration | University of Michigan | Graduated December 2015

 

LONG-TERM PROJECTS

- Alex Koi
  Compositions for live ensemble and studio recording.
- find the <Exits. 
  Solo improvisational project. 
- saajtak 
  Opera-electronic band. Co-composer with electronic artist Simon Alexander-Adams, bassist Ben Willis, and drummerJonathan Taylor. 

 

COLLABORATIONS

- Park / Jones / Koi Trio
  Trio collaboration for electronics, saxophone, percussion, voice, drum machine, etc.
- Lisa LaMarre and Dancers   
  Improvisation/composition collaboration with choreographer and movement artist Lisa LaMarre and Co.
- James Cornish Ensemble
  Vocals and electronics. Upcoming live video release. 
- ArtPeers
  Musical collaboration for dance film by Erin Wilson. Upcoming live video release. 
- Julian Allen
  Backup vocals for live video session.  
- Matt Endhal's "Jacobs Ladder Project" 
  Vocals. Upcoming CD release.
- MC Kadence
- Polyfold Musical Arts Collective                                                                                                                                                                                                   

TEACHING
- University of Michigan Music Con Panelist, Participant on "Beyond the Medium" Panel, March 2017
- Dance Dynamics Performing Arts Center, September 2016 - Present  
  Vocal and Music Instructor. Teaches private lessons and advanced high school classes.                             - Expressions Music Academy, May 2017 - Present
  Voice and Piano Instructor
- Hobart and William Smith Colleges, March 2016
  Guest Artist. Taught masterclass in vocal jazz. Visited composition and musicology classes. 
- Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (MOCAD), May - August 2015
  Public Programming and Education Internship. 

 

SELECT PRESS

- Detroit Metro Times - READ ONLINE | FULL INTERVIEW
- Detroit Music Magazine
- The Answer Is In The Beat
- Current Magazine

 

SELECT VIDEO

- "saajtak Live at Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit"
  As part of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra's Tenth Annual Strange Beautiful Music Marathon. 
  September 25, 2017. COMING SOON.

- "What Work Is"
  Improvised Opera by James Cornish Ensemble featuring Alex Koi. Based on poem "What Work Is" by US Poet Laureate,   Philip Levine. Performed at the DSO Cube. COMING SOON.

- "Spokes" 
   Music by saajtak: Alex Koi, Simon Alexander-Adams, Ben Willis, Jonathan Taylor. Recorded at the Russell   Industrial Center

- "find the <Exits. Live at the Detroit Free Arts Music Festival" 

- "They Were Displaced...And Again" 
   Live at ArtPrize in Grand Rapids, Michigan, 2016. In collaboration with Lisa LaMarre and Dancers and res45. 

- "Empty Mug Records Presents Alex Koi"                                                                               December 2015

 


Portfolio 

saajtak Spokes EP, Released independently March 2017. All songs written by saajtak. Vocal parts and lyrics by Alex Koi. 

saajtak

Channeling the textural experimentalism of electronic music, the catharsis of tragic opera, the growl of punk rock, and the urgency of polymetric grooves, saajtak “smelts its sonic influences into a maelstrom almost orchestral in nature and theatrical in its depth” (Sonic Circuits, Washington, D.C.) 

The Detroit-based ensemble was formed in late 2014 by vocalist Alex Koi, electronic artist Simon Alexander-Adams, drummer Jon Taylor, and bassist Ben Willis

www.saajtak.com

^ saajtak: Alex Koi, Simon Alexander-Adams, Ben Willis, Jon Taylor.

^ saajtak: Alex Koi, Simon Alexander-Adams, Ben Willis, Jon Taylor.

"Spokes" - Composed by saajtak. Performed at the Russell Industrial Center, March 2017. 

 
 
 

find the <Exits. Live at the Detroit Free Arts Music Festival, April 2016. 

find the <Exits. 

Alex Koi's solo project, <find the Exits., is grounded in improvisatory idea and navigates self-referentialism, consciousness, gender, and nature.  Utilizing looping methods, distortions, and alternative mediums, she creates a hypnotic atmosphere that breathes with its audience, communicating to the ear and to the body with both heavy, pulsating vibrations and tinkling considerations.  Notable travels of <find the Exits. have included a performance at the 2013 International Society for Improvised Music's New York City Conference, a seating as Guest Artist at Hobart and William Smith Colleges in March 2016, and a performance at the 2016 Detroit Free Arts Music Fest. 

find the <Exits. Live at Hobart and William Smith Colleges, March 2016. 

find the <Exits. Live at Hobart and William Smith Colleges, March 2016. 

 
 
 
 

"They Were Displaced...And Again". Collaboration with Lisa Lamarre and Dancers. Live at ArtPrize, August 2016. 

With Dancers

Collaborations with movement artists have included those with Lisa LaMarre and Dancers, Dance in the Annex, Rachael Ahn Harbert, Amy Wilson, Ryan Meyers-Johnson, Kristi Faulkner, and more. Performances have taken place at the Detroit Institute of Arts, ArtPrize, Spread Art, the Wealthy Theater in Grand Rapids, Michigan, the Artist Village in Brightmoor in conjunction with Culture Lab Detroit, and elsewhere across Michigan. Koi has also performed live improvisations for film, the latest of which was Erin Wilson's dance film "Chanti" in conjunction with ArtPeers

"Wandering Silver Considerations" - Collaboration with Lisa Lamarre and Dancers. Live at the Detroit Institute of Arts, May 8, 2016.

 
 
 
With multi-reedist and computer artist, Molly Jones, in rehearsal. 

With multi-reedist and computer artist, Molly Jones, in rehearsal. 

Park/Jones/Koi Trio

Trio collaboration with Joo Won Park and Molly Jones for electronics, saxophone, percussion, voice, drum machine, etc. Recent and debut performance at Fuse Factory's Frequency Friday, October 2017, in Columbus, Ohio. 

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Additional Media 

saajtak live at Arbor Vitae, Ann Arbor, May 2017. 

saajtak live at Arbor Vitae, Ann Arbor, May 2017. 

"EZR" by Julian Allen. Peter's Attic Live Session. Backup vocals. 

Live at the Yellow Barn, Ann Arbor, March 2016.

Live at the Yellow Barn, Ann Arbor, March 2016.

saajtak live at El Club, Detroit. saajtak with Xiu Xiu.

saajtak live at El Club, Detroit. saajtak with Xiu Xiu.

Press photo for Blind Pig performance, February 2016. 

Press photo for Blind Pig performance, February 2016. 

saajtak live at Arbor Vitae, Ann Arbor, March 2016. 

saajtak live at Arbor Vitae, Ann Arbor, March 2016. 

"Brand New" - Live Video of original composition presented by The Michigan Daily and Empty Mug Records. 

 

Press photo for Sidewalk Festival for Performing Arts. 

Press photo for Sidewalk Festival for Performing Arts. 

El Club, Detroit. 

El Club, Detroit. 

Arbor Vitae, Ann Arbor. 

Arbor Vitae, Ann Arbor. 

Preparing music in the vocal booth at Tempermill Studios, Ferndale. 

Preparing music in the vocal booth at Tempermill Studios, Ferndale. 

The Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (MOCAD). 

The Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (MOCAD).