Erik Johnson-Scherger was born in Montreal, Quebec, but currently lives in Ottawa, Ontario. At the age of six he began classical training on the violin, and followed that through to the completion of a Master’s of Music from the University of Ottawa in 2019, where he studied with Yehonatan Berick and Yosuke Kawasaki. Erik also holds a Bachelor’s of Music Performance and a Diploma in Chamber Music from Wilfrid Laurier University, where he studied violin, viola, and chamber music with Jerzy Kaplanek and other members of the Penderecki String Quartet, in addition to studying improvisation with Kathryn Ladano.
Erik’s current projects include Duo d’Asyl with classical guitarist Simon Berniquez, with whom he won Ottawa Chamberfest’s 2019 ChamberPints competition, as well as the chamber-jazz quartet Side-Eye and Grace, whose first album, Liminal Spaces, was released in March 2020. Erik is also a member of the Ottawa chapter of Ensemble Allure, a contemporary chamber collective.
In addition to serving as the violin soloist for the Canadian premiere of Tyler’s Suite in 2019, Erik has performed with the Kingston and Ottawa Symphony Orchestras as a section violinist and mandolinist, given concerts of avante-garde and improvised music with the NUMUS String Orchestra and Improv Ensemble, and has worked as sideman, session musician, and/or bandleader for country, rock, disco/R&B, celtgrass, and jazz projects. In his spare time, Erik enjoys baking cookies, playing Dungeons and Dragons, and looking at pictures of dogs on his phone.