Nexus Arts is thrilled to announce our 2021 Interplay Artists

Noriko Tadano is an award-winning, virtuoso master of the Japanese shamisen (a 3-string, banjo-like instrument) and a traditional Japanese vocalist. She has been playing shamisen since she was 6 years old and performs both as a soloist, as well as in collaborations, playing shows all over the world.

As well composing new music, Noriko also performs traditional Japanese songs (Minyo) which depict the life and feelings of ‘older’ Japan, centring on the themes of love, family and the close connection with nature.

Noriko was awarded the ‘Head Judge’s Special Award’ at the 2009 National Japanese Shamisen Competition held in Hirosaki, Japan, and has performed solo at the Sydney Opera House and in a number of dynamic shows at WOMADelaide. She also performed on the popular Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) music quiz TV show ‘Spicks and Specks’, and was an audience favourite and finalist on the ‘Australia’s Got Talent’ TV program. Noriko’s work has also featured in commercials, short films and international theatre productions.

As an artist, Noriko believes in breaking down national and genre boundaries, and she is currently exploring several collaborations with artists of diverse culturally and artistic backgrounds.

Adrian Schmidt Mumm is a guitarist, composer and producer with a diverse cultural and musical background. Born in Germany to Colombian/German and Pakistani/Canadian parents, he emigrated to Adelaide at the age of 7 where he completed a B.A. in Anthropology/Music in 2017. He creates works which cross boundaries of culture and genre and incorporates influences from across the globe into his practice, influenced by his fascination with the interplay of music and art between different cultures and eras, and his love for ‘crate digging’. Groups such as The Scorpions – a 1970’s Sudanese band who re-purpose traditional folk music in the style of American jazz played on Japanese made instruments, re-released by the German record label Habibi Funk 50 years later in 2018 – inform his practice and fuel his interest in this cultural cross-communication.

Currently he is the lead guitarist and primary songwriter for Slowmango, an instrumentally-driven band known for their energetic multi-arts live shows, winners of the 2020 SA Music Award for ‘Best New Artist’. They have released an EP and music video and are a highly active performing band, with upcoming shows including the opening weekend of Darwin Festival 2021 and a 6-month residency at The Lab. Adrian’s other projects include scoring video and film, such as the independent feature length film ‘Psychosis’; being the lead composer for IMMI, a multi-disciplinary project which has performed interstate and at the Adelaide Festival Centre’s inSPACE; working as director of music for The Bait Fridge, an arts collective with a focus on community events and immersive performances; and a range of musical projects of various genres.

Adrian has a penchant for improvisation in his performances and creates immersive projects which involve not just musical elements, but also strong visual direction and conceptual characteristics. During his time in the Interplay program, he will focus on a solo acoustic project in which he will explore the concept of ‘using the past to inform the present’ and a nostalgic look at the influence of multiculturalism in Australian music.

San Ureshi, which means “Joy of the Trio”, experiment with various cultures, soundscapes and textures, breaking boundaries with their unique and dynamic compositions. The trio features music by Zhao Liang (Guzheng-Chinese harp), David Dai (Erhu-Chinese violin) and Satomi Ohnishi (Percussion).

Since forming in 2019, San Ureshi have performed at OzAsia Festival (Festival Theatre, Adelaide, 2019), China Day (Elder Hall, 2019), Lucky Dumpling Market (Adelaide Festival Centre, 2020), and Chinese New Year Concert (Dunstan Playhouse, 2021). They also presented original compositions in response to visual artworks at the Art Gallery of South Australia for two separate exhibitions in 2019 and 2020.

Beyond the creation and performance of their original work, another focus of the trio is to educate and engage with the local community, especially younger audiences. They have delivered workshops to more than 300 students as a part of Adelaide Festival Centre’s CentrED (2019). San Ureshi have recently developed a show specially tailored for schools and families with young children -“Travel the world with kid’s music”. Since it premiered at Adelaide Fringe 2021, they have presented the show over ten times during Harmony Week 2021, in community centres across Adelaide.

Maryam Rahmani is an Iranian born Santur player who has been living in Adelaide since 2019. The Santur (or Santoor) is a delicate hammer dulcimer with 72 strings and Maryam has been playing this beautiful instrument since she was 12 years old, when she began exploring the tradition music of her homeland.

Maryam studied physics and engineering before she chose to pursue music, completing a Bachelor of Arts – Music at The University of Tehran. Since moving to Adelaide, she has performed at OzAsia Festival as a part of the ‘Silk Road’ ensemble. More recently, she has performed with the Nexus Arts Orchestra and been a collaborator in the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra’s ‘Floods of Fire’ project.

Maryam is particularly excited by the universality of music and its ability to dissolve boundaries and bring people into an experience of mutual respect and understanding.

Gene Phoa is an ex-advertising copywriter turned singer, songwriter and independent artist. Pairing a luminous voice with infectious hooks and anthemic storytelling, Gene’s music revolves around sharing his lessons in love and in life.

Leaving his marketing career to search for his “true calling”, Gene crammed his life into a backpack and spent over a year travelling through the South and Southeast of Asia. Rediscovering his childhood passion for music at an impromptu open mic night in India, Gene wrote a series of cathartic songs shortly after that inspired him to commit to his craft so that he could one day share them to inspire others.

Since then, Gene has performed at over 200 events across SA, taken out the lyrics award at the 2019 SCALA Festival of Original Music, and premiered his debut cabaret show ‘500 Nights of Winter’ with a sell-out season at the 2021 Adelaide Fringe Festival.

Inspired by vintage pop, indie rock and alternative music, Gene is currently working on his debut studio project which is expected to launch in late 2021.

Juan David Londono A.K.A GRECO is a Colombian songwriter, musician, and graphic designer. As an artist he performs as GRECO REPTIL, combining rock, funk and electronic beats and utilising his skills as a composer, bass player and vocalist.

GRECO REPTIL invites you to a party, with programmed tracks and live instruments, combining sound with the power of graphics for a full sensory experience. His music and style have been influenced by 70’s disco and funk, and his intention as an artist is to help people forget about their problems, get away from the daily grind and sing about life and diversity. Everyone is invited to this party regardless of their differences. GRECO REPTIL creates a space where people can sing, dance and connect with their emotions.

The idea started in the city of Medellín, Colombia, where Greco created this amphibious audio-visual project, making his first album LA NOCHE DEL REPTIL, of which the song “MI?A” stands out. This marked the start of a three-year flush of summer hits in Spain. Following this, GRECO REPTIL started performing nationally, received radio and television play, and won several music awards.

Now based in Adelaide, Greco is collaborating with international artists and preparing to make a second full length album.

Elizabeth Ruyi is an Adelaide-based singer-songwriter who shares her honest passion for music with every performance. Her gentle but strong nature shines through when you listen to her expressive and heartfelt lyrics. Being an Australian-born Malaysian Chinese woman, her cultural background and unique experiences make up a prominent part of where she finds her creative inspiration.

Her songwriting often starts with a piano or guitar in hand, which carries through each song. Elizabeth loves to tell her stories through a blend of pop and RnB but is constantly evolving and dabbling in new sounds, to develop her own voice and push her creative boundaries.

In November 2020, Elizabeth released her debut single ‘Wondering,’ which received airplay on Triple J and Triple J Unearthed. She will be releasing her next single in June, 2021.

Koleh uses his music’s unique and refreshing blend of South-East Asian instruments, samples and contemporary Indie-pop to transport listeners to Borneo rainforests and village long-houses. Embracing his heritage, the Kenyah Dayaks of Borneo, Koleh aims to carry on and share his tradition by playing the Sampe’, which is a traditional Dayak lute / guitar like instrument. This desire for cultural expression has a large influence on his music, as it has with other contemporary artists such as D.D Dumbo, Bombay Bicycle Club and Yo La Tengo.

Koleh released a dreamy bop, ‘Temengang’, in 2019. This was paired with a successful debut headline show at the Exeter, supported by Bromham and Ella Ion. At larger shows like the Temengang launch, and Indofest 2019, Koleh is joined by a band. Smaller Koleh shows are also unmissable, where you’ll find him solo constructing intricate loops and presenting his songs in a softer light. This year, Koleh will be releasing ‘Maze’, the next single from his upcoming EP ‘Songs From Upriver’.

Koleh plays bass and guitar with several other artists around Adelaide, including Bermuda Bay (Indie-pop), St Jacques (Indie-folk), Katie Pomery (Folk) and Homely Smells (Psych-rock).

Manasvi is a 23-year-old Tamil woman living and working on unceded Kaurna land. As an international student, she often feels like an outsider, but exploring different music spaces in SA has made her experience here far more enjoyable. She is an early-career artist exploring different interests and passions within music and other creative spaces.

Manasvi primarily focuses on singing and rap, but also enjoys playing the guitar. She’s been writing songs for several years but has recently turned to it with more dedication as it gives her comfort and happiness in an uncertain world. Keeping in mind her rich Tamil heritage, Manasvi aspires to bridge elements from her native language, family experiences and memories with the thoughts and feelings she has in English. She is particularly drawn to rapping in Tamil as it allows her to be her most confident self when she writes and performs it. Manasvi also uses GarageBand to sample voice-recordings she has of beloved family members as a way of creating sounds that are familiar and safe.

Earlier this year, Manasvi was involved in Equaliser, a project by Adelaide UNESCO City of Music and Music SA. Over 6-weeks, she was given the opportunity to collaborate with other women and non-binary people interested in music, giving her a fresh perspective on collaboration and songwriting.


The Interplay development program will provide individualised and group-based support and development opportunities, as well as a paid performance showcase for each artist.

Interplay is open to artists from both culturally diverse and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander backgrounds who are performance ready. The program aims to provide dedicated space for artists to develop, share and connect, bringing contemporary musicians together in the spirit of intercultural communication, exploration and creation.

Throughout 2021, program artists will take part in:

  • One on one career development sessions with Nexus staff
  • A performance series at Nexus Arts
  • The opportunity to make a high-quality live music video
  • A one on one photoshoot with an experienced music photographer
  • Development of your Electronic Press Kit and customised One Page Link website
  • Artist catch up sessions


Emily Tulloch
Program Manager: Artistic Director, Nexus Arts

Emily Tulloch is a South Australian musician working as a violinist, composer-arranger, educator and arts manager, with a passion for the creation, presentation and promotion of contemporary music in Adelaide, Australia and beyond. Emily was a member of Zephyr Quartet from 2005 to 2020, and with the ensemble created critically acclaimed and award-winning shows, performed across Australia and internationally, received two Ruby Awards for Innovation and three APRA/AMCOS Australian Art Music Awards. As a composer she has been commissioned by the Adelaide Youth Orchestra, Restless Dance Theatre, and Brink Productions. She has been a core member of the COMA (Creative Original Music Adelaide) committee since 2007, working on the presentation and promotion of original music in that city and helping co-ordinate twice-monthly concert presentations continuously for more than ten years. Emily holds two first class Honours degrees, in violin performance and Spanish. Emily joined Nexus Arts as Music Programs Manager in early 2017 and took on the newly created role of Artistic Director in July 2019.

Naomi Keyte
Artist Development Officer

Naomi Keyte is an artist making an interesting blend of folk and alt-pop music that is distinct both sonically and lyrically. Think Julie Byrne, Kate Bush, Sufjan Stevens, and Sharon van Etten. There is an intimacy in Keyte’s voice that is both gentle and powerful, and her band help bring to life her image-rich lyrics. In 2016, Naomi won the National Live Music Award for ‘Best Live Voice SA’, and in 2017 was nominated for three South Australian Music awards: ‘Best Release’, ‘Best Folk’, and ‘Best Female Artist’. After the 2017 release of her debut album ‘Melaleuca’, she has played a series of Parlour shows and festivals including Here’s to Now and WOMADelaide (2018). With an interest in artistic diversity and a passion for supporting other artists, Naomi joined the Nexus Arts team in mid 2018 in an Artist Development Officer role.

For any information, please call or email us at 08 8212 4276 or [email protected]

This program has been supported the Music Development Office through the Government of South Australia, Department of Innovation and Skills