Composer leaves $14 million to women's organisation

Composer leaves $14 million to women's organisation


norman lebrecht

October 31, 2011

She was not much known outside Canada and most of her money came from her father, a media magnate.

But Anne Southam will be remembered for a huge gift she has made in her will to support Canadian women. The Toronto Star has the story.

Pianist Christina Petrowska Quilico with the late composer Ann Southam.

And here’s more on her life and works.


  • Colin Eatock says:

    “Southam’s masterpiece is a nineteen-movement suite of piano pieces called Rivers that spans two CDs and is about two hours long. (It’s available on a set from Centrediscs: CMCCD 10505.) Rivers is, in fact, an intertwining of three separate sets of piano pieces. The largest (Set 3) is nine movements long and is the most “conventionally” minimalist: fast and flowing music made of kaleidoscopic patterns in a continual state of flux. Set 2 (eight movements) is tranquil and reflective; and Set 1 (two movements) is a cross between the styles of Sets 2 and 3. Assembled together, the movements of Rivers become a fluid continuum. Yet unlike some minimalists, Southam is neither obsessive nor oppressive: rather, her music is fresh, chromatically enriched and bursting with ideas.” CE

  • Richard says:

    This should NOT be allowed. If someone left the money to a “men’s” group or a “white” group, we would have national hysteria and screams of racism or sexism.

    • The Vienna Philharmonic forbade membership to women until 1997. In the 14 years since then it has only hired 4 women (and about 50 to 60 men.) The orchestra, through its State Opera formation, receives millions every year from the Austrian government. The Americans have also given it millions to play a yearly series of 3 concerts in Carnegie Hall.

      The Vienna Philharmonic also has a tradition of excluding Asians because the orchestra feels it would destroy the ensemble’s image of Austrian authenticity. The policy is directed toward the thousands of Asians who have studied at Vienna’s University of Music.