International Women's Day 2020

International Women's Day 2020
Julia Marie Naglestad. Maja S.K. Ratkje

This International Women’s Day, Sunday March 8, we have released an update of our Celebrating Women Composers: A Timeline interactive brochure. For almost one hundred years, the publishing houses of Wise Music Group have represented leading women composers and continue to find ways in which to bring great music to the stage. Since the booklet’s inaugural publication, we have continued to commit to that and so now welcome Du Yun and Jeanine Tesori to the group.

This new 2020 edition includes such leading Russian names as Sofia Gubaidulina, Galina Ustvolskaya and Elena Firsova, represented in America and Canada through G Schirmer, as well as new signings and a selection of updated works. There are of course many others too, such as Ethel Smyth, Elisabeth Lutyens and, indeed, Oscar-winning composer Hildur Guðnadóttir (whose work we will be further celebrating in the coming months) who also represent the diversity of our catalogue and are all equally worthy of discovery.

This booklet is laid out by composer in chronological order and emphasises the rich history and output of their orchestral music in particular. We have included brief introductions to each composer, repertoire listings and links to explore the music further online.


Looking ahead: Saariaho 70 in 2022

Kaija Saariaho's music is sought after all the world over, her scores beguilingly beautiful and at times awesome. In October 2022 she celebrates her 70th birthday,offering a specific reason to celebrate the her amazing body of work, Country premieres of some works are available and new work continues to be added to the catalogue. For more information on Saariaho’s work contact

In July 2020, Saariaho’s fifth opera Innocence premieres at the renowned Festival International d'Art Lyrique d'Aix-en-Provence, before moving to Dutch National Opera, Finnish National Opera, Royal Opera House Covent Garden, San Francisco Opera in the coming seasons. More info

Introducing: Du Yun

Born and raised in Shanghai, China, and currently based in New York City, Du Yun works at the intersection of opera, orchestral, theatre, cabaret, musical, oral tradition, public performances, electronics, visual arts, and noise. Known for her "relentless originality and unflinching social conscience" (The New Yorker) , Du Yun's second opera, Angel's Bone (libretto by Royce Vavrek), won the 2017 Pulitzer Prize; in 2018 she was named a Guggenheim Fellow; and in 2019, she was nominated for a Grammy Award in the Best Classical Composition category for her work Air Glow.

In 2020, Du Yun will have several high-profile world premieres. Sweet Land, premiering February 29-March 15 in Los Angeles, is a collaboration with pioneering opera company The Industry. A new work for the LA Phil New Music Group premieres under David Bloom's direction April 21 and Jennifer Koh and Davóne Tines perform Du Yun's Give Me Back My Fingerprints at UCLA April 17. Angel's Bone receives its West Coast Premiere at LA Opera May 1 and 3.

Selected premieres in 2020

  • 09 March
    Judith Weir: On the Palmy Beach
    Ruby Hughes, soprano; Julius Drake, piano; Natalie Clein, cello
    Wigmore Hall, London (then touring)

  • 13-16 March
    Missy Mazzoli: Breaking the Waves (Australian Premiere)
    Scottish Opera, Adelaide Festival

  • 20 March
    Kaija Saariaho: Vista WP
    Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra; Susanna Mälkki, conductor
    Helsinki Music Centre, Helsinki, Finland

  • 01 April
    Anna Thorvaldsdottir: AIŌN Country Premiere
    Iceland Symphony Orchestra; Anna-Maria Helsing, conductor
    Iceland Dance Company; Erna Ómarsdóttir, choreography
    Harpa, Reykjavik, Iceland

  • 12-13 April
    Kaija Saariaho: La Passion de Simone (chamber version)
    Sayuri Araida, soprano
    Avanti!; Clement Mao-Takacs, conductor

  • 16 April
    Helen Grime: Meditations on Joy WP
    Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin
    Robin Ticciati, conductor
    Philharmonie, Berlin

  • 16-18 April
    Anna Thorvaldsdottir: METACOSMOS
    Los Angeles Philharmonic; Karina Canellakis, cond.
    Walt Disney Concert Hall, Los Angeles, CA, USA

  • 17 April
    Helen Grime: Violin Concerto UKP
    Leila Josefowicz, violin
    BBC Symphony Orchestra
    Dalia Stasevska, cond.
    Barbican, London

    23 April
    Kaija Saariaho: Vista (Norwegian Premiere)
    Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra; John Storgårds, conductor
    Oslo Konserthus, Oslo, Norway

  • 24 April
    Thea Musgrave: The Voices of Our Ancestors (French Premiere)
    Choir of L'Opera National de Bordeaux; Salvatore Caputo, conductor
    l’Opéra National Bordeaux, Bordeaux, France

  • 30 April
    Missy Mazzoli: Orpheus Undone WP
    Chicago Symphony Orchestra; Ricardo Muti, conductor
    Symphony Center, Chicago

  • 30 April-3 May
    Kaija Saariaho: Vista WP
    LA Philharmonic Orchestra; Susanna Mälkki, conductor
    Walt Disney Hall, Los Angeles, USA

  • 07-08 May
    Helen Grime: Percussion Concerto
    Colin Currie, percussion; Scottish Chamber Orchestra; Francois Leleux, cond.
    Queen's Hall, Edinburgh (07 May)
    City Halls, Glasgow (08 May)

  • 20-23 May
    Judith Weir: Blond Eckbert (pocket version)
    English National Opera; Olivia Clarke, conductor
    ENO Studio, Lilian Baylis House, London

  • 12-13 June
    Judith Weir: We are shadows
    Grant Park Music Festival; Carlos Kalmar, conductor
    Pritzker Pavilion, Chicago, IL, United States