Alex Canovas / Artistic Director

The Young New Yorkers’ Chorus Appoints Alex Canovas as its Next Artistic Director

The Young New Yorkers’ Chorus (YNYC), a nonprofit organization that fosters the art of choral singing and brings new music to life by creating opportunities for young composers, is pleased to announce the appointment of Alex Canovas as its next Artistic Director, effective for the upcoming 2018-2019 season. Canovas, an experienced vocal artist and conductor, was selected following a nearly year-long search process. His appointment was enthusiastically approved by YNYC’s Board of Directors this month.

“On behalf of the Board of Directors, we are pleased to welcome Alex Canovas to the YNYC family as our next Artistic Director and the conductor of both our mixed and women’s ensembles,” said Maeve Montalvo, Secretary of the Young New Yorkers’ Chorus. “Alex shares YNYC’s core values through his commitment to collaborative leadership, high-quality vocal technique and socially-conscious programming. This has been a season of change for us and he has already proven his dedication to our musical family. We feel sure that Alex possesses the right skill set, leadership and vision to lead our organization forward.”

“I am honored, humbled, and incredibly excited to join YNYC as its next Artistic Director,” said Alex Canovas. “This wonderful family of excellent musicians has made a great impact through its pursuit of passion through the arts, the community it has created for young New Yorkers, and its dedication to premiering new music and supporting young composers. I am thrilled to become a part of it.”

Canovas is currently the Associate Conductor of the critically-acclaimed vocal ensemble, Choral Chameleon. His recent projects include performances at Brooklyn’s National Sawdust and the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. As an ardent supporter of new music, this summer he will enter his fifth year as Singer-Faculty at Choral Chameleon’s annual Summer Institute. Canovas will also be working as an Associate Conductor on the Mostly Mozart Festival’s mass choral production of John Luther Adams’ ‘In the Name of the Earth’, held in Central Park this August. In addition, Canovas serves as the Director of Music at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn, and as the Operations Manager for the Empire City Men’s Chorus.

As an upstate New York native, Canovas graduated from the Ithaca College School of Music with a B.M. in Vocal Performance. Following graduation, he moved to New York City and served on staff at OPERA America’s National Opera Center. After leaving to pursue performance exclusively, Canovas served as the Assistant Conductor of the Ridgewood, NJ-based ensemble Ars Musica.

Canovas will succeed Michael Kerschner, who has led YNYC since 2006. Under Kerschner’s leadership, YNYC performed at the 2011 American Choral Directors’ National Convention in Chicago, created its women’s ensemble in 2012, and collaborated with visual artists Eyebodega and Marco Brambilla and composers including Caroline Shaw, Mohammed Fairouz, and Shara Worden. Kerschner also oversaw YNYC’s annual Competition for Young Composers, through which YNYC has commissioned and performed over two dozen works by emerging artists. The board and leadership express their unending gratitude for his 12 years of inspired leadership and vision.

Kerschner’s final performance with YNYC will be this coming Saturday, June 2 at 8:00 p.m. ET at the Gelsey Kirkland Academy in New York.

About the Young New Yorkers’ Chorus

YNYC, founded in 2001, was built to provide a fellowship for talented singers in their 20s and 30s who could nurture and develop a close-knit community in New York City. YNYC performs a vast variety of music, from works by classical greats to those of prominent living composers and upholds its mission to bring new music to life through its annual Competition for Young Composers, as well as frequent commissions and collaborations with living artists. YNYC enjoys a grassroots organizational structure that utilizes the skills of its members and volunteers to manage its growth and visibility in the New York City choral scene. Learn more at

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