VICTORIA, BC – Yamaha Canada Music has announced the Joan Watson Memorial Scholarship, for first-year students entering the University of Victoria. Beginning in the fall of 2016, and continuing for the next three years, a Canadian brass player accepted to the School of Music will be eligible to receive a $1500 cash award.
Joan Watson, Canada’s foremost horn virtuoso and educator, was a Yamaha Artist for over 30 years.
She studied at the University of Victoria and began her career with the Victoria Symphony before moving to Toronto in the 1980s.
“Joan’s extraordinary legacy as a horn player and teacher will live on through the Joan Watson Memorial Scholarship,” says husband and long-time musical partner Scott Irvine, also a Yamaha Artist. “It is particularly satisfying to see that U Vic will be the recipient. Joan spoke very highly of her years there with her horn teacher, Dick Ely. Representing the family of Joan Watson, I am grateful to Yamaha Canada Music for their vision and leadership in making this happen.”
Joan made an immense contribution to music in Canada, with her unrivalled passion for performance and a dedication to music education. In 2008, Joan was the first female brass player in Yamaha’s global history to be featured on a poster.
“Joan was one of the rare artists that was always keen to share ideas and collaborate on exciting new projects,” says Inderjit Mudhar, Communications Specialist at Yamaha Canada Music. “She was relentless in her devotion to developing young talent, so I am certain that she would be proud to have her name on this important new award.”
“The University of Victoria’s School of Music wishes to express its profound thanks and gratitude to Yamaha Canada Music for their establishment of the Joan Watson Memorial Scholarship,” says Arthur Rowe, Acting Director of the School of Music. “We are proud to remember her as a student, and to have her memory live on through this award to assist other young musicians who attend U Vic.”
Joan leaves behind a musical legacy that will be an inspiration for generations, and this award recognizes her commitment to young musicians and the art of brass playing.