Friday, August 19, 2022

Alice Ping Yee Ho wins Symphony Nova Scotia award for Canadian women composers

Symphony Nova Scotia will premiere Ho's new work in March of next year.

Symphony Nova Scotia has announced Toronto-based composer Alice Ping Yee Ho as the recipient of this year’s Maria Anna Mozart Award for Canadian women composers.

Dr. Jane Gordon and Symphony Nova Scotia have created an exceptional award that continues to support and showcase the voices of talented women composers, and to draw attention to the challenges that we face in history and society. – Alice Ping Yee Ho

First launched in 2016, the award supports the work of Canadian women composers, providing funds for Symphony Nova Scotia to commission and perform a new symphonic work by a Canadian woman every three years.

“This recognition meant so much to me because it acknowledges women composers’ contributions and achievements,” says Ho.

The first of its kind in Canada, the award is made possible from funds provided by Halifax resident and Symphony Nova Scotia supporter Dr. Jane Gordon. As part of a committee of volunteers, Gordon helped review each application.

“There has been a lot more music by women and other under-represented composers, but it hasn’t been represented in proportion to the population,” says Gordon. “Every step we can take is more than welcome.”

Ho’s works have been performed across Canada and internationally. A two-time Juno Award-nominee, her recent projects include six albums and two recordings devoted to music written for different genres. She holds a Bachelor of Music in Composition with high distinction from Indiana University and a Master of Music in Composition from the University of Toronto.

Ho’s new work will premiere in March of next year by Symphony Nova Scotia and will be featured on CBC Radio as part of an International Women’s Day broadcast that same month.

“She’s a superb craftswoman, has a tremendous imagination and immediately identifiable compositional voice, and has a musical language that I think will really speak to our audience in Nova Scotia without compromising the innovation in her work,” says Symphony Nova Scotia music director Holly Mathieson. “I’m delighted we will be working with such a well-respected Canadian composer, and can’t wait to open the score with the players.”

“Dr. Jane Gordon and Symphony Nova Scotia have created an exceptional award that continues to support and showcase the voices of talented women composers, and to draw attention to the challenges that we face in history and society,” adds Ho.

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