" It takes a lot of people to build and sustain a great arts community, and that is something that we can be very proud of in Ontario. At its best, it feels like a real partnership and everyone - absolutely everyone - donors, artists and audiences wins. "
What are you currently doing?
Since 2011, I’ve continued to have wonderful composing opportunities that have taken my operas all around the world. The Brothers Grimm in Brazil, Pandora’s Locker in Wales and numerous productions of The Hobbit in the US and Europe have given me the chance to not only reach more young Canadians (my Applebaum Award was in the field of Music for Young People) but also more children internationally. In 2015 I was appointed the Artistic Director of The Canadian Children’s Opera Company, a position which has placed me deeper in Toronto’s operatic community. As much as we teach, though, we never stop learning, and I’m at the tail end of a Doctorate of Musical Arts at the University of Toronto.
What did receiving the Louis Applebaum Composers Award mean to you?
A career in composing has been incredibly rewarding but not always easy. Recognition by the Ontario Arts Foundations was a small acknowledgment that I had done the right thing. There have been a lot of illustrious alumnae for this award and so it also gives a little extra encouragement to be the best you can be. Something like this also helps to open a few doors, and in this “network-driven” field, that never ever hurts.
What does private arts philanthropy mean to you as a working artist?
It takes a lot of people to build and sustain a great arts community, and that is something that we can be very proud of in Ontario. People and foundations who generously donate to support the arts often humbly state that it is the artists - the composers, the writers and performers who count, but those people that support the arts…often from a deep-seated love, are just as important in the equation. At its best, it feels like a real partnership and everyone, -absolutely everyone - donors, artists and audiences wins.