SOCAN Foundation Awards $100K To Young Creators

The prizes were handed out in two separate competitions that drew over 500 submissions.

SOCAN Foundation Awards $100K To Young Creators

By FYI Staff

The SOCAN Foundation has awarded financial prizes to young music creators across Canada in two separate competitions totaling nearly $100,000. With more than 500 submissions, the contests were evaluated by juries of music industry professionals from across the country.

“These awards serve as a celebration of emerging music creators from across the country, supporting the SOCAN Foundation’s mandate to nurture young and emerging talent and provide opportunities for their development,” said Charlie Wall-Andrews, Executive Director of the SOCAN Foundation, in a press release. “Among the hundreds of submissions received, we’re excited that the next generation of music creators demonstrate such a high calibre of artistic excellence and creativity.”


 SOCAN Foundation Awards for Emerging Audio-Visual Composers

Created in partnership with RBC, this competition is designed to recognize Canadian composers 30 years of age or younger, for original music themes or scores created exclusively for audio-visual support (TV, film, etc.). Prizes for a total amount of $27,000 were awarded to the winners in the competition’s four categories. Jury panel members were the well-known Canadian screen composers Nathalie Bonin, Schaun Tozer, and Laurel MacDonald.


Best Original Score — Animated

1st prize: Yao Wang, from British Columbia, for Brides of the Well (BC);

2nd prize: Brandon Liew for Starting Point (AB);

3rd prize: Stéphanie Hamelin Tomala for Orboros (QC).


Best Original Score — Fiction

1st prize: Stéphanie Hamelin Tomala for Final Curtain (QC);

2nd prize: Virginia de Vasconcelos Kilbertus for Astronaut (ON) ;

3rd prize: Isaias Garcia for In The Mind's Eye (ON).


Best Original Score — Non-Fiction

1st prize: Evan MacDonald for Canadian Immigration Matters (QC);

2nd prize: Nick Grimshaw for Karo (ON);

3rd prize: Shaun Chasin for The Queen's New Clothes (ON).


Best Original Theme (opening or closing) 

1st prize: Isaias Garcia for In The Mind's Eye (ON);


2nd prize: Spencer Creaghan for Wife Me (ON);

3rd prize: Joey Reda for A Vulture's Story (QC).


SOCAN Foundation Awards for Young Composers

This annual competition is designed to recognize Canadian composers 30 years of age or under, for original concert music works in the following five categories: large ensemble, chamber ensemble, solo or duet, vocal, and electroacoustics. Awards totalling $42,750 were presented to the finalists of all classes, and the John Weinzweig Grand Prize of $3,000 for the best overall work was awarded to Eugene Astapov for Hear My Voice. The jury panel members were Elisabeth Raum, Dinuk Wijeratne, and Alissa Cheung.



The Godfrey Ridout Awards, for works of any number of voices with or without instrumentation and electroacoustics.

1st prize: Roydon Tse for And the Ocean was Gone (ON);

2nd prize: Francis Choiniere for A Clear Midnight (QC);

3rd prize: Tristan Zaba for Encroachment (ON);

Young Composer Prize: Leo Purish for Flexible Fugue for Choir (SATB) and piano (QC).


The Hugh Le Caine Awards, for live or recorded electroacoustics, where the intended performance is, at least in part, through loudspeakers. Works in this category may be multi-media and may include acoustic instrument(s) or voice(s), live or recorded. The principal element in the work must be electroacoustic.


1st prize: Carmen Vanderveken for At Play: 3 short pieces (QC);

2nd prize: Xavier Madore for Les loges de la suite (QC);

3rd prize: Bekah Simms for Skinned & Skinscape (ON);

Young Composer Prize: Kai Kubota-Enright for Isaac (BC).


The Pierre Mercure Awards, for solo or duet compositions, with or without voices and electroacoustics.

1st prize: Stephanie Orlando for Scatterbrain (ON);

2nd prize: Alison Yun-Fei Jiang for Isles (ON);

3rd prize: Liam Ritz for Drei Klavierstücke (ON);

Young Composer Prize (ex æquo): Leonid Nediak for Fantasie No. 2 (ON), and Thomas Cardoso-Grant for artifact ii (QC).



The Serge Garant Awards, for compositions requiring a minimum of three performers to a maximum of 12 performers with or without voice and electroacoustics.

1st prize: Eugene Astapov for Hear My Voice (ON);

2nd prize: Nolan Hildebrand for HEATDEATH (MB);

3rd prize: Corie Rose Soumah for Reflet (QC);

Young Composer Prize: Jules Bastin-Fontaine for Trio en hommage à Bruckner (QC).


The Sir Ernest MacMillan Awards, for compositions requiring no fewer than 13 performers up to a full symphony orchestra, which may include vocal participation and may be scored to include electroacoustics.

1st prize: Luis Ramirez for Chido (ON);

2nd prize: William Kraushaar for APOCALYPSIS 15 (QC);

3rd prize: Jared Miller for Ricochet – Reverb – Repeat (NY);

Young Composer Prize: Leo Purich for Variations and Fugue on Mozart (QC).

Registration deadlines for the SOCAN Foundation’s 2020 competitions will be announced on the organization’s website this winter.

 Thanks to a partnership with NYO Canada, three young composers will have an opportunity to hear their works in concert. These works will be Variations and Fugue on Mozart by Leo Purich, from Québec; Chiaroscuro by Dan Jeremy Reyes; and Prairie Frost by Stuart Beatch. One of these artists will also be offered a residence.

 More details on SOCAN Foundation Award winners may be found here. 

Jayda G
David Reiss

Jayda G


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