Nicole Lizée


Called a “brilliant musical scientist” and lauded for “creating a stir with listeners for her breathless imagination and ability to capture Gen-X and beyond generation”, JUNO-nominated composer Nicole Lizée creates new music from an eclectic mix of influences including the earliest MTV videos, turntablism, glitch, rave culture, and Hitchcock.

Her commission list of over 40 works is varied and distinguished and includes the Kronos Quartet, BBC Proms, the San Francisco Symphony, the National Arts Centre Orchestra, NYC’s Kaufman Center, Powerplant, Darcy James Argue’s Secret Society, So Percussion, Eve Egoyan, the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, and Tapestry Opera. Her music has been performed worldwide in renowned venues including Carnegie Hall and Royal Albert Hall and in festivals including the BBC Proms (UK), Roskilde (Denmark), Bang On a Can (USA), Classical:NEXT (Rotterdam), All Tomorrow’s Parties (UK), Barbican’s Sound Unbound (UK), Metropolis (Australia), Luminato (Canada), Other Minds (San Francisco), Ecstatic (NYC), and Dark Music Days (Iceland).

Nicole was awarded the prestigious 2013 Canada Council for the Arts Jules Léger Prize for New Chamber Music. She is a Civitella Ranieri Foundation Fellow (New York City/Italy) and recently received a 2016 Lucas Artists Fellowship Award (California). In 2015 she was selected by composer Howard Shore to be his protégée as part of the Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards. Additional awards and nominations include a Prix Opus, a Dora Mavor Moore Award in Opera, the UNESCO International Rostrum of Composers’ Top 10 List, and the 2002 Canada Council for the Arts Robert Fleming Prize for achievements in composition.

Composer website:

Featured Works

Modern Hearts, for electric guitar.

Filmmaker David Cronenberg has created a large body of work dealing with themes that simultaneously elicit feelings of fascination, revulsion, wonder and dread. His early works especially, are concerned with body modification, mutation, infection, and the melding of technology into human corporeal experience. Modern Hearts uses this idea of the blending of the organic and the inorganic, as well as the mechanization of the human experience. Wood and metal meet and are transformed through robotic and digital processes while the player obstinately expresses relentless figures of organic harmony and melody.

Featured in Canadian Waves (Special Edition June 2016)