Background and Education

Nakul Tiruviluamala was born in New York City and began piano lessons when he was 4 years old.  At 7, he began learning music composition under the supervision of his piano teacher Ms. Felicia Balt.  By age 11, he was twice selected to perform one of his own compositions at a greater tri-state area Yamaha JOC (Junior Original Concert) event.  At age 12 he moved to California, beginning piano, composition, and music theory lessons with Mr. Arkady Luxemburg.

After graduating high school, he earned his Bachelor’s of Music degree in Classical Piano Performance from UC Irvine under the guidance of Professor Nina Scolnik.  Nakul received his Masters in Music Composition at San Diego State University, studying composition under the supervision of Dr. Joseph Waters, Professor Brent Dutton, and Dr. Chris Warren.  While at SDSU, he received regular piano instruction from Professor Richard Thompson (jazz and classical) and Dr. Karen Follingstad (classical chamber music).   After completing his Master’s, Nakul received his Artist Diploma in jazz piano performance at SDSU, studying with Richard Thompson, Karl Soukup, and Bill Yeager. Nakul is currently pursuing his PhD in computer music at UCSD, studying with Miller Puckette, Mark Dresser, Shlomo Dubnov, Anthony Davis, and Bob Keller.

He was winner of the 2015 Arts Alive SDSU interdisciplinary  art-installation compeition, where him and two other colleagues created an interactive art exhibit which combined music, visual projections, and virology.  He is also a recipient of the 2015 SDSU Graduate Equity Fellowship, awarded to graduate students who demonstrate academic excellence. He was  awarded the 2018 Jazz Society Award by the Jazz Society of Southern California. Most recently, Nakul composed the music for the film Forever, which is an official selection at the Sundance Film Festival.

Nakul’s taste in music is eclectic.  As a pianist and singer, he has performed with pop/rock bands, choruses/a capella groups, jazz combos, Indian/Carnatic ensembles, and in western classical chamber groups.  Performance situations range from the completely casual to the professional and academic.  Nakul is also a passionate educator, and is a lecturer at San Diego State University in electroacoustic composition and music theory.