AUGUST 29, 2018 (Toronto, ON) – The SOCAN Foundation, the separate organization funded by SOCAN that promotes musical creativity and the role of music creators in today’s society, today announced that it has awarded financial prizes to young music creators across Canada in three separate competitions totaling nearly $94,750. With over 500 submissions, the competitions were evaluated by juries of esteemed 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 talent and provide opportunities for their development,” said Charlie Wall-Andrews, Executive Director of the SOCAN Foundation. “We’ve also made a few exciting changes such as increasing the prize value this year, and expanded our partnership with the National Youth Orchestra of Canada which will create an extraordinary residency opportunity for some of the award candidates.

SOCAN Foundation Awards for Young Canadian Songwriters created in partnership with Sirius XM Canada Inc. celebrate emerging and talented songwriters in Canada. A total of $25,000 (five prizes of $5,000) were awarded to Mary Bryton Nahwegahbow (Ontario) for “Clegg Street”, Kate Stevens (Alberta) for “It’s Real”, Braden Lamoureux (Nova Scotia) for “Into The Light”, Christian Hudson (Ontario) for “Four Leaf Clover”, and William Dolan (British Columbia) for “Cadillac”.  

The jury for these awards comprised of Akena Okoko, Jully Black, Jocelyn Strang, Adrienne A. Malette, and Menno Versteeg.

 SOCAN Foundation Awards for Audio-Visual Composers

Created in partnership with RBC, these awards recognize Canadian screen composers 30 years of age and younger for original musical themes or scores created exclusively for audio-visual support (TV, film, etc.). A total of $27,000 was awarded to the winners in four categories. The Jury consisted of successful Canadian screen composers Claude Castonguay, of Quebec; Todor Kobakov, of Ontario; and Mélanie Guay, of Québec.

Award Recipients

Best Original Score — Animated
1st: Stephanie Hamelin Tomala, of Quebec, for “Area 51”; 2nd: Alexandro Manzon, of Québec, for “Bottle”; and 3rd: Marc-Antoine Gagnon, of Quebec, for “Destiny.”

Best Original Score — Fiction
1st: Spencer Creagan, of Ontario,for  “The Ballad”; 2nd: Stephanie Hamelin Tomala, of Ontario, for “What’s Within”; and 3rd: Philippe Stebbings, of Quebec, for “Trapped.”

Best Original Score — Non-Fiction
1st: Alexandro Manzon, of Québec, for “Can You See (On Yonder Tree)?”, 2nd: Spencer Creagan, of Ontario, for “Sororis”; and 3rd: Andrew Bennett of Saskatchewan, for “Citizen”.

Best Original Theme (opening or closing)
1st: Stephanie Kowal, of California, for “Year Zero”; 2nd: Lora Bidner, of Ontario, for “Beauty Between the Nothing”; and 3rd: Sahlia Wong, of Ontario, for “Le Léon.”

SOCAN Foundation Awards for Young Composers

This annual competition recognizes Canadian composers 30 years old and younger for original concert music works in the following five categories: Large Ensemble, Chamber Ensemble, Solo or Duet, Vocal, and Electro acoustics. A total of $42,750 was awarded to the finalists in the five categories. The John Weinzweig Grand Prize of $3,000 for the best overall work was awarded to Michael Kim-Sheng for his work “(spacebar for title).” Jury members were Lori Freedman, of Québec; Brian Current, of Ontario; and Vincent Ho, of Alberta.

Award Recipients

The Godfrey Ridout Awards for works of any number of voices with or without instrumentation and/or electro acoustics.

1st: Maria Atallah, of Ontario, for “Mar Maroun”; 2nd: Andrew Noseworthy, of Newfoundland, for “One Stalk, One Arrow, No Stalk, No Arrow”; 3rd: Gavin Fraser, of Nova Scotia, for “Into My Own”; and Young Composer Award: Hoatian Yu, of Ontario, for “ancient lament.”

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

1st: Michael Kim-Sheng, of Quebec, for “(spacebar for title)”; 2nd:Xavier Ménard, of Quebec, for “Chasses Inouïes; 3rd: Matthew Horrigan, of British Columbia, for “taste / oh yeah I guess”;

The Pierre Mercure Awards for solo or duet compositions, with or without voices and/or electro acoustics.

1st: Maxwell Lucas, of Ontario, for “Ovum/Azoth”; 2nd: Brandon Chow, of British Columbia, for “Regnvejr I Skoven”; 3rd: Brian Topp, of British Columbia, for “Ljós for Soprano, Sax and Live-Electronics”; and Young Composer Award: Hoatian Yu, of Ontario, for “fragments of bach.”

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

1st: Hoatian Yu, of Ontario, for “Ritual I”; 2nd: Alison Yun-Fei Jiang, of Ontario, for “On Light and Birds”; 3rd: Luke Nickel, of Manitoba, for “String Quartet #1”; and Young Composer Award: Adam Zolty, of British Columbia, for “Three Expressions for Piano Septet.”

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

1st: Charles-Philipe Tremblay-Bégin, of Quebec, for “Utopia or Oblivion”; 2nd: Hunter Coblentz, for “Cello and Orchestra;” 3rd:  Philippe Macnab-Seguin, of Quebec, for “Seizing to be Ceased”; and Young Composer Award: David Ko, of British Columbia, for “Let’s Talk About Heritage.”

In a new partnership with the National Youth Orchestra of Canada, they will be welcoming the works of William Kuo, of British Columbia for “Noli me Tangere, Jared Miller, for “Luster” and Stephanie Orlando for “Phases of the Moon”. They will have an opportunity to hear their pieces come to life by the NYO Canada and one artist will have a residency opportunity.

More details about the winners can be found on the SOCAN Foundation Website, at

Applications to the 2019 Awards will be announced on SOCAN Foundation’s website in Winter 2019.