Author Bio


Photo credit: Shayne Gray

Erika Nielsen is a professional cellist and writer, based in Toronto, Canada. She enjoys a multifaceted career as a solo and chamber musician, collaborative artist, orchestral player, educator and author.

Erika is the author of bestselling and award-winning memoir and wellness guide SOUND MIND: My Bipolar Journey from Chaos to Composure (Trigger Publishing, 2019), and was a recipient of a 2019 Canada Book Award, and has reached #1 on Amazon in its category. Erika is on the roster of authors at K2 Literary Agency, and is a creative contributor to Psychology Today Magazine, online magazine as well as, and has been published in the American Federation of Musicians Local 180 newsletter News Harp.

Erika is also the creator of Sound Mind Presentations, blending cello performance and sharing her story and message of positive mental health to a variety of audiences, from patients at CAMH, to middle and high schools. She has also acted as a bipolar consultant to lead actress Carolina Bartzak for her leading role of Maura in new Canadian film, An Audience of Chairs

As a cellist Erika has performed with artists such as Grammy-winning artist Kanye West and Juno-winning artist Johnny Reid. She was principal cellist of the Sudbury Symphony from 2011-13, and holds an Artist Diploma from the Glenn Gould School and a Bachelor of Music degree in cello performance from Queen’s University. Based in Toronto, she currently performs with a variety of ensembles and projects such as 25 piece Toronto Motown band The Big Sound, with Classic Albums Live, and throughout Canada and the USA with ELO tribute Strange Magic.  She is also a visual artist.

To read more about Erika as a professional musician, visit her professional site and follow her on Instagram @celloerika #cellistartistwriter

For a list of media appearances and presentations for Sound Mind, visit

All rights reserved. Copyright Erika Nielsen@Sound Mind 2020

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