Stephanie Orlando selected as next Maria Anna Mozart Award recipient

Halifax/K’jipuktuk, NS – Symphony Nova Scotia is pleased to announce Stephanie Orlando has been selected as the fourth Canadian composer to receive the Maria Anna Mozart Award.

Based in Toronto, Ontario, Orlando, 29, was selected from among 30 applicants for this highly prized award. Her catalogue contains works for standard ensembles to orchestra, amplified pill bottles, and everything in between. Her current interests include mixed media composition, creative coding, and using technology in combination with classical instruments.

Stephanie’s music engages with contemporary classical influences, while exploring them through the lens of her own inspiration. Her work has been performed by Esprit Orchestra, 5th Wave Collective, Duo d’Entre-Deux, the Freesound Series, Femmelody Chamber Music Collective, Stereoscope Saxophone Duo, junctQín keyboard collective, Daniel Ramjattan, Nikki Joshi, and Yang Chen. She is currently pursuing a Doctor of Musical Arts in Composition at the University of Toronto.

One of her current projects is a series of mixed media solo and chamber works that explore various aspects of mental wellness. Through this long-term project, she seeks to create honest and vulnerable works that connect with listeners who see themselves in her work and feel represented in bringing the conversation on mental wellness to the concert stage.

Stephanie’s work is incredibly sophisticated and fresh,” says Symphony Nova Scotia Music Director Holly Mathieson, a member of the five-person selection committee. “We were all really struck by the beauty of her writing and her empathy for orchestral textures and colours.”

I am honoured to be the recipient of the Maria Anna Mozart Award, and to create a new work for Symphony Nova Scotia,” says Orlando. “I admire their commitment to support underrepresented voices in Canadian orchestral music, and to bring more diversity to their concert programming. I am hopeful that their vision will continue to inspire these changes among orchestras across the country.”

Orlando’s original composition will premiere with Symphony Nova Scotia during the 2024/25 concert season.

Launched in 2016, the Maria Anna Mozart Award supports the work of Canadian women and non-binary composers, providing $10,000 for Symphony Nova Scotia to commission and perform a new symphonic work. The award is the first of its kind in Canada and was made possible through the generosity of Halifax resident and Symphony supporter Dr. Jane Gordon.

On March 2, 2023, Symphony Nova Scotia will premiere Alice Ping Yee Ho’s new work – The Phantom Bird of Han – as part of the Schubert and Sara Davis Buechner concert.

“As a Chinese-Canadian composer, I am truly thrilled to create a new composition that shares the beauty and wonders drawn from my own rich cultural heritage,” says Ho. “Through this new work, I wish to bring the audience new sounds and ideas, as well as an inspirational message of hope and resilience.”

Ho received the Maria Anna Mozart Award in 2022.

More information about the Maria Anna Mozart Award can be found at

About Symphony Nova Scotia
Symphony Nova Scotia is Nova Scotia’s orchestra. With a home base in Halifax and performances across the province, Symphony Nova Scotia is proud to be a vibrant, vital part of Nova Scotia’s rich cultural community. From sold-out orchestral concerts to free family events, youth and seniors’ activities, and educational partnerships, Symphony Nova Scotia creates unforgettable experiences with truly great music. Visit to learn more, listen online, or get tickets today!


For more information, please contact:

Carol Kehoe
Director of Marketing and Communications, Symphony Nova Scotia
[email protected]