Her skills on the strings have earned her many prestigious awards since she began studying the violin at the tender age of two-and-a-half. But for Kerry DuWors (MUS M 2003), winning the top prize at the 2003 Eckhardt-Gramatté National Music Competition in Brandon, Man., was the career milestone she needed. “It means that I have achieved a certain level and musical standard that can push me toward becoming a professional artist,” she says. The prize, which was awarded in May, includes a short-term residency at the Banff Centre in Alberta, a 20-city national recital tour, a solo appearance with the Montreal Chamber Orchestra and $5,000.
This fall, DuWors joined the Brandon University School of Music in Manitoba as a lecturer. Although she’s only 23, she’s up for the challenge – and the chance to work with colleagues in Western Canada. “Prairie people have a strong sense of what it means to build communities, support networks and friendships,” says DuWors, who comes from Saskatoon. “These are tremendously important aspects of our life and how we survive.”
DuWors, who has a “fervour and passion for chamber music,” fondly recalls her collaborations at U of T’s Faculty of Music, co-ordinated by assistant professor Scott St. John. She also studied with Lorand Fenyves, professor emeritus of violin, and considers him “the best teacher in Canada.” DuWors aims to be as much of a mentor to her students as Fenyves was to her. “I hope that I can instil the same positive outlook, desire to work hard and be creative, and love for music.”