Honorary degrees have been awarded at UVic since its inaugural convocation in 1964. An honorary degree is the highest honour the university can bestow for distinguished achievement in scholarship, research, teaching, the creative arts and public service.
As part of the Fall convocation ceremony on November 14, we were thrilled to confer upon School of Music double alumna Linda Catlin Smith with an Honorary Doctor of Music (DMus).
Forging a career in music
Linda Catlin Smith’s music has been performed by Canada’s major orchestras and featured in concert series and festivals across North America and around the world. Born in New York City, Linda received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from UVic, before moving to Toronto. Since then, she has forged a career like her music: quiet and persistent, unassuming and steady, with an absolute certainty of purpose.
On the surface, her music is deceptively simple; look closer, and it reveals a mastery of harmony and orchestration that puts her in the highest ranks of composers. In the classical music world, where works by (male) composers from the past dominate orchestral concerts, Linda’s is often the only contemporary voice. Over more than 40 years, she has developed a singular vision, creating real beauty in a world that profoundly needs it.
A sensitive teacher and mentor, Linda has also been an inspiration and a model for a generation of young composers, performers and ensembles, many of whom have become important artists in their own right. She will continue to be revered by future generations in Canada and beyond.