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Artist Profile

Mikael Karlsson

Mikael Karlsson

Mikael was born in Sweden in 1975, and moved to New York in 2000 after abandoning a stalled career in liquor retail.

Mikael holds a masters degree in composition from the Aaron Copland School of Music and graduated Summa Cum Laude with departmental honors in June of 2005.He has received numerous awards for his compositions and his music has been performed at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Cathedral of St. John the Divine, Galapagos Art Space, The Tank, Issue Project Room, The Stone, LeFrak Concert Hall and many other lovely venues in New York. He has been featured by WNYC's Soundcheck with John Schaefer and by the New York Times. The sheet music to his widely performed piece Nasty Fucker (flute and electronics - recorded by Claire Chase for Mikael's debut album Privacy) was published in Butt Magazine. He has collaborated with Lykke Li, Kleerup, Bruce LaBruce, Claire Chase, Joshua Rubin, Alan Pierson, David Taylor, Othon Mataragas, Wolfram Koessel, Black Sun Productions, Lydia Lunch, Benoit-Swan Pouffer, Maria Beatty, Victoria Bergsman (Taken By Trees), Cory Smythe, Wolfram Koessel, Francois Rousseau, ASS (Andreas Söderström), Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet, Swedish TV4, Rob Stephenson, Christopher McDonald and many more.

In 2007, he was an honoree of the 2007 OUT100 top 100 influential people, listed as that year's composer. In 2011, the listeners of Q2 radio (NY public radio) voted Mikael as one of their favorite 100 composers under 40.

His music is on the soundtrack of films by acclaimed experimental filmmakers Barbara Hammer (History Lessons, 2001 - an Official Sundance Selection that year), Maria Beatty (Bandaged), Christopher Young (Orpheus and Eurydice 2001 - released by Please Records as a separate soundtrack cd), Bruce LaBruce's two latest film Otto; or, Up With Dead People, L.A. Zombie and many others. His music is moving on to video games with his Tobias Wagner / Roman Vinuesa collaboration, Battlefield - Bad Company.

Mikael is the personal representative of celebrated composer Tobias Picker and was recently given a fourth Extraordinary Talent Visa for the US. He teaches at the Aaron Copland School of Music in NYC.

In 2003, he co-founded film scoring collective Please MusicWorks LLC, which has grown to include more than 100 of New York’s best performers. www.pleasemusicworks.com.

In 2006, he released the cd “dog” with Rob Stephenson, and in Dec 2008, the album Privacy. EPs Instead and Seven Eight were released in 2008 and 2010.

Artist's Media Player

Privacy Cover
  • Privacy
  • Alternative
  • Mikael Karlsson
  • 09/23/2008
  • Privacy
  1. Five Four
  2. Nilon
  3. Nasty Fucker - 1. Loop
  4. Nasty Fucker - 2. Antiphonal...
  5. Nasty Fucker - 3. Lower
  6. Three Movements for Music Box - 1. Chimes...
  7. Three Movements for Music Box - 2. Flow...
  8. Three Movements for Music Box - 3. Aria...
  9. In Case of Brahms - 1.
  10. In Case of Brahms - 2.
  11. In Case of Brahms - 3.
  12. Comet Home
  13. Vanishing
Life Class Cover
  • Life Class
  • Soundtrack
  • Mikael Karlsson
  • 02/03/2009
  • Life Class
Liner Notes: LIFE CLASS for "Atelier" by François Rousseau Composer Mikael Karlsson Conductor Alan Pierson Musicians Alto Flute: Eric Lamb Oboe / English Horn: Nick Masterson Clarinet / Bass Clarinet: Joshua Rubin Viola 1: John Pickford Richards Viola 2: Wendy Richman Viola 3: Caleb Burhans Cello 1: Kivie Cahn-Lipman Cello 2: Clarice Jensen Bass: Brad Aikman Piano: Mikael Karlsson Recorded in the LeFrak Concert Hall at the Aaron Copland School of Music, Flushing, New York. Mix and Master (stereo, and 10 channel mixes) Christopher McDonald Ensemble Recording session Recording Engineer: Silas Brown Assistant Engineer: Doron Schachter Solo / Layer Recording sessions Recording Engineer: Christopher McDonald Contracting: This Room Piano Technician: Andrew Saderman Administrative coordinator at the LeFrak Concert Hall: Janice Salvatore
  1. Life Class - Parts I-V
  2. Life Class - Parts VI-VII
  3. Life Class - Parts VIII-XII...
Dog Cover
  • Dog
  • Alternative, Electronic
  • Mikael Karlsson & Rob Stephenson
  • 09/17/2008
  • Dog
  1. Little Rebellious Aspects
  2. Delicate Bob Nine
  3. Schweet
  4. Piano Duet
  5. Cantate
  6. Juan
  7. Among Our First Toys
  8. Custom Hybrid
  9. Spandex Bubble Spacesuit Dance...
  10. Kyoto Korma
  11. Civilians
Instead (EP) Cover
  • Instead (EP)
  • Electronic, Pop
  • Mikael Karlsson
  • 04/15/2009
  • Instead (EP)
  1. I Was Wrong (Havoc Version)...
  2. Until We Bleed, Feat. Lykke Li (Mikael's Cello Version)...
  3. A Sinking Feeling
  4. I Was Wrong
  5. Vanishing - (Live At The Stone, New York)...
Day Comes Apart Cover
  • Day Comes Apart
  • Alternative
  • Mikael Karlsson
  • 03/22/2010
  • Day Comes Apart
Liner Notes:
  1. Day Comes Apart - One
  2. Day Comes Apart - Two
  3. Day Comes Apart - Three
  4. Day Comes Apart - Four
  5. Day Comes Apart - Five
  6. Day Comes Apart - Six, Seven...
  7. Day Comes Apart - Eight, Nine...
On This Planet (A Ballet by Benoit - Swan Pouffer) Cover
  • On This Planet (A Ballet by Benoit - Swan Pouffer)
  • Alternative
  • Mikael Karlsson
  • 04/19/2010
  • On This Planet (A Ballet by Benoit - Swan Pouffer)
Liner Notes:
  1. On This Planet (A Ballet by Benoit - Swan Pouffer)...
Seven Eight Cover
  • Seven Eight
  • Instrumental, Alternative
  • Mikael Karlsson
  • 12/07/2010
  • Seven Eight
Liner Notes:
  1. Seven Eight (clarinets: Joshua Rubin)...
  2. Hi Heart In The Middle (clarinets: Joshua Rubin)...
  3. Coin (clarinets: Joshua Rubin)...
Ends Cover
  • Ends
  • Alternative, Dance
  • Mikael Karlsson
  • 07/05/2011
  • Ends
Liner Notes:
  1. Ends
Nattvittje Cover
  • Nattvittje
  • Alternative
  • Mikael Karlsson
  • 11/20/2011
  • Nattvittje
Liner Notes: Performed by Sirius Quartet. Sirius are: violins: Fung Chern Hwei and Gregor Huebner, viola: Ron Lawrence, cello: Jeremy Harman. (www.siriusquartet.com) Cover photo by Niklas Alexandersson (www.niklasa.com).
  1. Nattvittje - 1 (Sirius Quartet)...
  2. Nattvittje - 2 (Sirius Quartet)...
  3. Nattvittje - 3 (Sirius Quartet)...
  4. Nattvittje - 4 (Sirius Quartet)...
  5. Nattvittje - 5 (Sirius Quartet)...
  6. Nattvittje - 6 (Sirius Quartet)...
  7. Nattvittje - 7 (Sirius Quartet)...
  8. Nattvittje - 8 (Sirius Quartet)...