After the kingfisher's wing
Has answered light to light, and is silent,
the light is still
At the still point of the turning world.
— T.S. Eliot, "Burnt Norton", Four Quartets
With music described as “haunting” and “eerily beautiful” (Tapestry Opera), Canadian composer Cecilia Livingston specializes in music for voice. She is a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada Postdoctoral Fellow in Music at King's College London and she is composer-in-residence at Glyndebourne Festival Opera, where her work is supported by the Canada Council for the Arts and builds on her 2015-17 Fellowship at American Opera Projects in New York.
Winner of the Canadian Music Centre’s 2018 Toronto Emerging Composer Award, the 2018 Mécénat Musica Prix 3 Femmes for female opera creators in Canada, and a winner in the SOCAN Foundation Awards for Young Composers, her music has been heard at Nuit Blanche, the 21C Music Festival, World Choir Games, with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra and the Kingston Symphony, and with Toronto’s Thin Edge New Music Collective. Her current projects include Terror & Erebus, an opera for TorQ Percussion Quartet and Toronto's Opera 5, new work for Glyndebourne, and a song cycle with poet Anne Michaels.
An associate composer of the Canadian Music Centre and a National Councillor of the Canadian League of Composers, her creative and research work is supported by the Canada Council for the Arts, the Ontario Arts Council, the Toronto Arts Council, the SOCAN Foundation, and SSHRC (the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada). Her articles and reviews have appeared in Tempo (Cambridge), the Cambridge Opera Journal, and The Opera Quarterly (Oxford); she has given papers on contemporary opera at the Royal Musical Association and American Musicological Society annual conferences. Her master’s and doctoral research was fully funded by SSHRC Graduate Scholarships (CGS-M and CGS-D). She studied with Steve Reich at Bang on a Can’s summer festival and Soundstreams’ Emerging Composer Workshop, and she holds a doctorate in composition from the University of Toronto, supervised by Christos Hatzis, where she was awarded the Theodoros Mirkopoulos Fellowship in Composition.