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Wes Kenney named music director of Denver Young Artists Orchestra

May 8, 2013

CSU music professor will oversee all music programming and serve as rehearsal and performance conductor for DYAO.

Wes KenneyWes Kenney, a tenured professor of music at Colorado State University and music director for the Fort Collins Symphony and Opera Fort Collins, has been named music director of Denver Young Artists Orchestra. Beginning in the 2013-14 season, he will oversee all music programming at DYAO and serve as the rehearsal and performance conductor for its lead orchestra of young musicians. He also served as a guest conductor for DYAO during the 2012-13 season.

“We’re delighted to be announcing Wes Kenney’s appointment,” said Paul Keebler, president of the DYAO board of directors. "Wes has a tremendous record of achievement as a conductor of both adult and youth orchestras, and he is uniquely well qualified to take over this critically important role for our organization.”

Kenney is director of orchestras and teaches graduate conducting at CSU. He has been music director of the Fort Collins Symphony for 10 years and in the same position with Opera Fort Collins since 2004. Previously, he was associate conductor for the Virginia Symphony in Norfolk, and director of orchestras at the College of William and Mary and San Francisco State University. He also spent seven years as music director for the Oakland Youth Symphony in California, taking that ensemble on tour to both Central Europe and China.

Kenney is also a past president of the Conductors Guild, a professional organization whose membership includes more than 1,600 conductors worldwide. Kenney holds degrees from the University of Southern California and San Francisco State University and has been the recipient of numerous professional and teaching awards.

“DYAO has established a strong position as one of the top youth orchestras in the country,” Kenney said. “As a DYAO guest conductor this year, I have experienced first-hand the extraordinary level of talent this orchestra enjoys, as well as an outstanding commitment to excellence amongst all its young musicians. I look forward to working with DYAO’s board and staff to deliver an outstanding educational experience for these wonderful young people.”

Kenney is the 11th music director in the 36-year history of the Denver Young Artists Orchestra.

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