The Canadian Music Centre in BC is thrilled to announce that Vancouver composer and recent SFU graduate Carl Winter is the winner of this year’s Pentland Prize in Composition, a $1,000 scholarship awarded annually to a graduate composition student at UBC, SFU, or UVIC. CMC BC gratefully acknowledges the generosity of Dr. Geoffrey Newman, who makes this annual award possible.

We presented the award to Carl on Monday, February 4th at 7:00 PM in the Murray Adaskin Salon. Audience members and friends listened to two selections — S-C-H, and Grey Matter — from his most recent 3-disc album SubInfinity.

Carl recently submitted Grey Matter: The Challenge of Maintaining Harmonic Consistency and Thematic Ambiguity in the Age of Artificial Intelligence towards the degree of Master of Fine Arts at Simon Fraser University, and was recommended by his teachers to receive this award. omposition Grey Matter, which is also the feature work on Carl’s latest CD, the composer writes as follows:

“Grey Matter, a forty-two minute, 4-movement suite for string quartet and Disklavier (Yamaha’s automated piano), ambiguously explores themes of aging (and the body’s attendant neural/psychic deterioration and social alienation) in the age of automation, digital technology and artificial intelligence. Another thematic layer implies the following questions: will the roles of creative and performing artists become obsolete, like so many other professions are feared to become, with accelerating automation and artificial intelligence? Is technology bestowing upon us a utopian or dystopian future? Conceived with symmetrical harmonic processes, the work layers and juxtaposes sequentially diminishing harmonies (and diminishing performance personnel) with contrapuntal procedures. Alluding to a wide range of historical sources as disparate as Joseph Haydn, Robert Schumann, Béla Bartók, Charlie Chaplin, Kurt Vonnegut, Lee “Scratch” Perry and Spike Jonze, Grey Matter culminates with a collage of Bachian and Lisztian materials feeding back and reverberating through circular 4-channel electroacoustic diffusion.”

About Carl Winter

Carl Winter is a composer based in Vancouver, Canada. He has studied composition with Christopher Butterfield, Robin de Raaff and Owen Underhill and interactive technology/electroacoustic music with Arne Eigenfeldt and Chris Dobrian. Performances and workshop sessions include Arraymusic Young Composers Workshop in Toronto, Jean Coulthard Reading Sessions with Vancouver Symphony Orchestra and by Turning Point Ensemble, cellist Marina Hasselberg for Sonic Boom Festival and most recently by trumpeter JP Carter at SFU School of Contemporary Arts, Vancouver. He has written for both chamber and orchestral settings and has just completed his third recording project Sub-Infinity: Selected Chamber and Interactive Music, a triple CD.

About the Pentland Prize in Composition

Dedicated to BC Legacy Composer Barbara Pentland, the Pentland Awards seek to recognize extraordinary contributions to Canadian music, excellence in composition, and best performances of Canadian music within the Province of BC through five distinct awards. The Pentland Prize in Composition is a $1,000 scholarship awarded annually to a BC graduate student in Composition at the School of Music at the University of Victoria, the School of Music at the University of British Columbia, or SFU’s School for the Contemporary Arts. The Pentland Prize rotates between those three schools each year, with the graduate student to be presented the award selected by the Composition faculty of that school. The Pentland Prize in Composition is generously sponsored by Dr. Geoffrey Newman.