1. Please provide us with a brief bio of yourself and your background.

First, I would like to thank you so much for giving me the opportunity to participate in your wonderful awards program.

I am a pianist, a recording artist, a published author, a Bösendorfer Artist, and a voting member of the Recording Academy (GRAMMY Awards®). I have a Bachelor of Music in piano performance from the University of Ottawa, and a Master of Music and Musicology from the Sorbonne. I come from Canada, I lived many years in France, and I am now living in the United States with my husband, our newborn daughter, and our dog Wonder. For those who want to know more about my background, you will find my autobiographical article published in the Journal of the International Alliance for Women in Music in the following link:


I was also recently hosted on Shriram Iyer's podcast The Next Big Thing where you can learn more about me:


2. What led you to become a talent/artist/influencer/performer/current profession?

I've always been drawn to the piano, music, and the arts. One of my first memories was listening to a song my Mom had played on the record player, and feeling an overwhelming amount of emotion while listening to it. Music is my passion, and an essential form of expression in my life.

3. Tell us more about your studio/company/academy.

I recently co-founded with my husband a record label called Elysium Classics. It's a new, exciting venture in its infancy and we're both very excited for the future of our label.

4. What skills have you learned that will help you in your result and/or performance?

Tenacity and the willingness to never give up in the face of adversity is more than a skill... it's a modus vivendi that helps not only in performance, but also in life. It is a life force.

5. What is your own definition of an impressive performance/show/masterpiece?

An impressive performance, show, or masterpiece is one that the audience will never forget. It is one that transcends time.

6. What is your creative or ideation process like?

I am methodical in my creative process while also needing the freedom to let the creation go where it needs to go. From conception to the final product, when I'm composing a piece of music, writing an article, learning a new piece of music, or recording, I have a set of goals to achieve. I write these goals down, which adds clarity to my process and helps me keep a clear vision of where I'm headed. If I had to describe my process in a few words, it would look like this: Conception – Clarification – Creation – Completion. The Four C's.

7. What has been the best performance of your career so far?

My best and most memorable performance was in Paris, France. I was giving a recital at Église Saint Merri near Centre Pompidou. One of my favorite pieces to perform is Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata. It's been with me since I was a kid. It's an old friend. I was playing the three movements in this old, magnificent church, along with music by Bach, Rachmaninov, and Satie. When I finished playing the first movement of the Moonlight, immediately after I played the final chord the church bells rang at the hour. It wasn't planned. It took everyone's breath away. It was one of those divine moments I will never forget.

8. Describe the worst performance you have seen. What would you change about it?

I cannot recall ever having seen a bad performance, or a worst performance.

9. Congratulations! As the winner of LIT Talent Awards, what does it mean to you, or your team, to receive this honor?

Participating in your awards program has given me the opportunity to have my music heard internationally. Winning three Platinum awards for my piano composition HOPE is a great honor. I'm thrilled to be a triple Platinum winner in the LIT Talent Awards!

10. How has winning an international awards help promote you and/or your masterpiece?

It is a great opportunity to showcase my music, and have it heard worldwide, and the networking and promotional opportunities are significant.

11. What are the challenges, for your winning entry, that you faced?

A few weeks after I composed HOPE, both my parents passed away two weeks apart. To say that it was a challenging period of my life is an understatement. I was extraordinarily close to my parents and losing them was the hardest thing I have endured. They were my parental soulmates, and I still can't believe they're gone. This being said, from great tragedy came HOPE as a few months after both my parents passed away, my husband and I found out that I was pregnant with our first child! Life always finds a way. From death comes life… from immense sorrow comes the hope of a new tomorrow.

12. What advise you will give to those who are in the same industry and/or are interested with your craft?

My one piece of advice is to never give up. If you have a passion and a dream, no matter what it is, no matter how hard life gets, keep going. Have courage, have tenacity, and keep going no matter what. You'll never regret it.

13. Who inspired you in your life, and why?

My parents inspired me. They loved fiercely and completely, and they gave everything to their children and to their family. If in the winter of my life I can say that I lived with as much passion and love as my parents, I will have lived a wonderful life.

My husband inspires me. He is my muse, my greatest supporter, my collaborator, and my champion.

My daughter has been my salvation in my grief. She inspires me to rediscover the world through the wonder in her eyes.

My teachers have inspired me greatly. I carry their teachings and their words of wisdom with me. I treasure them.

I admire the people who inspire me.

14. Who do you admire and what did he/she do that motivated you?

I admire the great classical and romantic composers. Beethoven, Rachmaninov, and Chopin are the three I admire the most. They wrote music that speaks to my soul. They were giants among men.

I admire the great francophone singers: Jacques Brel, Charles Aznavour, Barbara, Edith Piaf, among many others. They were artists in their bone marrow, their stage presence was extraordinary, and their voices were stellar.

I admire the Golden Age of Hollywood, the classics, and the eternal stars of the Silver Screen. Just like a great piece of music, a great movie has the ability to transport you to different realms and realities.

I admire beauty in the seven arts: music, sculpture, painting, literature, architecture, performing, and film.

I admire the veterans, their courage and bravery, and their willingness to sacrifice themselves for the love of their country.

I admire astronauts, NASA and the space program. They make me dream of the stars, of our Milky Way, and of an entire universe waiting to be discovered.

I admire the Canadian hinterland, its nature, its vast, magnificent expanse of land.

I admire the beauty and the history of Europe and how every step you take on its cobbled streets is a step into the past.

I admire the spirit and the promise of America, how every step you take on her teeming shores is a step into a future of endless possibilities… where the American Dream is the flame that lives in the hearts of all those who seek life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

I am inspired by that which I admire.

15. Who would you most like to collaborate with?

In the spirit of shooting for the stars and aiming for the Moon: I would most like to collaborate with Steven Spielberg and John Williams who are paragons in their fields. I would also like to collaborate with the New York, London, Paris, and Vienna Philharmonic orchestras.

16. Who are the three people/agencies/studios/academies/companies you would like to nominate, to participate in LIT Talent Awards?

I nominate Alan Storeygard, Charu Suri, and Michael Peloso to participate in the LIT Talent Awards.

17. What is the key that made you succeed? Any parting words of wisdom?

The key to success is tenacity and the drive to keep going. Passion without tenacity is a barren land of unfulfilled dreams.

18. What is your upcoming masterpiece, that you’re currently preparing, about?

I draw my creative inspiration from my life experiences, passions, and emotions. My next project is a reflection of this and I look forward to sharing more very soon. Stay tuned!

19. If you could change anything about the entire industry, what would it be?

Today's music industry is open to everyone. Everyone has a chance to showcase their talents and have their music heard. It's an exciting time to be a musician, and even though there is always room for improvement, the music industry today -- as a place of opportunity for all -- is the most perfect version of itself.

20. Do you have anything else you would like to add for the interview?

Just two words: Carpe Diem!

Winning Entry

LIT Music Awards  - HOPE

Winner/ Winner's Company

Mary Dawood Catlin


LIT Instrumentalists - Best Pianists

LIT Music Awards  - Platinum Winner
LIT Music Awards  - HOPE

Winner/ Winner's Company

Mary Dawood Catlin


LIT Music - Best Modern Classical Composition

LIT Music Awards  - Platinum Winner
LIT Music Awards  - HOPE

Winner/ Winner's Company

Mary Dawood Catlin


LIT Music - Best Original Composition

LIT Music Awards  - Platinum Winner