The Sudbury Youth Orchestra Composer Competition for Young Women





Described by Toronto Concert Reviews as “a mature artist and a budding superstar”, Canadian violinist and violist Leslie Ashworth has performed in France, Italy, Canada, and the United States and in New York’s Carnegie Hall, The Banff Centre’s Rolston Hall, and Toronto’s Koerner Hall. Ashworth earned her Bachelor of Music Performance from The Glenn Gould School under Barry Shiffman and Paul Kantor on the Tim and Frances Price Scholarship and graduated with her Master’s of Music in Violin in May 2021 from Rice University on the Dorothy Richard Starling Foundation Full Scholarship. She is currently pursuing a Master’s of Music in Viola with Misha Amory at The Juilliard School in New York.


Ashworth was named one of CBC’s 2021 Hot 30 Under 30 Canadian Classical Musicians. She achieved her Associate Diploma (ARCT) in Violin, Viola, and Piano Performance, earning the Royal Conservatory’s 2019 National Gold Medal for ARCT Viola, and won first place in Jeunesses Musicales du Canada’s Home Sweet Home Composition Competition 2020. A passionate writer, Ashworth participated in the Emerging Arts Critic Programme with publications in WholeNote, Opera Canada, and Dance Current. She received the Ontario Lieutenant Governor’s Community Volunteer Award for founding Suite Melody Care, a non-profit sharing interactive performances with hospital patients and elderly in Canada and the U.S. Ashworth plays on a 1696 Albani violin and an 18th century Bohemian viola on loan from generous benefactors. A dedicated teacher and Juilliard Morse Fellow Classroom Instructor, Ashworth aspires to nurture her students’ curiosity and love for music.




Runner-Up: Allyson Whitmell


Allyson Whitmell is a Canadian pianist-singer-composer who loves to tell stories through music and sound. She was thrilled to have had the opportunity to enter the Sudbury Youth Orchestra Composer Competition for Young Women.


Allyson has achieved her ARCT from the Royal Conservatory of Music in both piano and voice.


As a third year Bachelor of Music student at the University of Toronto, Allyson is majoring in Piano Performance and is equally passionate about minoring in Composition where she has been guided by her incredible and supportive composition professors Christos Hatzis and Larysa Kuzmenko. Allyson is a member of the Screen Composer Guild of Canada and is pursuing several musical goals including composing and songwriting for film and theatre.


Allyson will always be honoured to have been a part of this wonderful competition.

A special THANK YOU to 
The Sudbury Chapter of the Canadian Federation 
of University Women

for your generous donation which allowed SYO to sponsor this amazing competition!



Thank you to all of the other participants who contributed submissions to the Sudbury Youth Orchestra Composer Competition for Young Women.