Joy Lapps is the winner of the Toronto Arts Foundation’s Muriel Sherrin Award for 2023.

The award celebrates an artist or creator who has made a contribution to the cultural life of Toronto through outstanding achievement in music. The recipient will also have participated in international initiatives, including touring, studying abroad and participating in artist exchanges.

The finalists were Hilario Durán and Measha Brueggergosman-Lee.

Lapps receives a $10,000 cash prize, while each of the finalists receives $1,000. In addition to the prize money, Lapps will receive a complimentary week-long stay at Valleyview Artist Retreat.

Lapps is an internationally lauded artist, composer and educator who activates spaces for community building and creative expression, using the steelpan as her primary tool for engagement. Her most recent recording Girl in the Yard is an inspiring musical tribute to the women in her life. The assessment panel noted that Lapps is an “excellent musician” who gives engrossing performances. They said that her capacity as an organizer is impressive, and that through her work and investment in the city, she provides a “glowing example of how to develop the self and community together.”

See the Toronto Arts Foundation’s full list of winners and finalists at