OAF News

Composer Frank Horvat is awarded the Kathleen McMorrow Music Award

Toronto, November 15, 2017- Frank Horvat is the recipient of the inaugural $5,000 Kathleen McMorrow Music Award. The award recognizes the composition and presentation of contemporary classical music by Ontario composers.  This award is in support of Horvat’s new work commissioned by Protection International, a human rights NGO, and inspired by the impactful environmental photo essay by Luke Duggleby entitled For Those Who Died Trying.

(photography by Anita Zvonar)

Born in Ottawa, now residing in Toronto, Frank Horvat is an accomplished multi-genre composer and pianist who has made the tricky musical leap that allows him to pursue a niche of his own. Whether he writes for his band, the concert stage or film/TV, his music is both aggressive and introspective telling deeply personal stories while permitting audiences to ponder their own. He ignores boundaries and isn’t afraid to mix politics with art. His compositions have a driving minimalism and a haunting reflection and are most often based on social injustices or the wondrousness of life, love and longing.

A graduate of the Faculty of Music at the University of Toronto and the Royal Conservatory of Music, Frank is also very active within the field of music education. Along with maintaining a private teaching studio working with piano, theory, and composition students, Frank regularly conducts workshops and master classes, adjudicates festivals, and authors articles on music education. Frank is past President of the Ontario Registered Music Teachers’ Association and Lakeshore Arts. From 1999 to 2011, Frank was a member of the RCM College of Theory Examiners. Frank is currently an Associate Composer at the Canadian Music Centre and member of the Canadian League of Composers.

With a manic drive to create, his discography is continuously growing and his compositions have been premiered on four continents and featured on radio and TV networks internationally. His portfolio of works consists of chamber, pop/rock, electronic, musical theatre, film, and large ensemble pieces.

diskriminatsiya – from Frank Horvat’s latest album, The Current Agenda
with flutists, Christopher Lee and Vincenzo Volpe

Frank was selected by a jury consisting of Patricia Cano (Sudbury), Spy Dénommé-Welch (Hamilton), Yaovi Hoyi (Ottawa), Vandana Vishwas (Mississauga), and Alyssa Wright (Barrie). The jury was enthusiastic and unanimous in their choice of Frank Horvat for the inaugural Kathleen McMorrow Music Award. They said, “Frank’s depth of commitment to social justice is matched by his inspiring compositions. We are moved by the sensitivity and integrity of his work. This passionate and heartfelt music carries an emotional message to the audience.”

The Kathleen McMorrow Music Award was established in 2015. Kathleen McMorrow headed the Music Library at the University of Toronto, Faculty of Music from 1974 to 2013. She established the award to recognize and encourage the composition and presentation of Canadian contemporary classical music. The Ontario Arts Foundation manages the endowment that funds the award. The Ontario Arts Council is responsible for the nomination and adjudication process.


 For more information, please contact:

Alan Walker
Executive Director, Ontario Arts Foundation
Tel: (416) 969-7413

 Established in 1991, the Ontario Arts Foundation (OAF) is passionately committed to building long-term support for the arts in Ontario. In 2016-2017, the OAF paid over $3.2 million in endowment income and $325,000 in awards and scholarships.

For more than 50 years, the Ontario Arts Council (OAC) has played a vital role in promoting and assisting the development of the arts for the enjoyment and benefit of Ontarians. In 2016-2017 the  OAC funded 1,657 individual artists and 1,098 organizations in 212 communities across Ontario for a total of $50.8 million.

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