Brian Mummert | Music Director
Brian Mummert’s artistic endeavors are driven by his abiding love of words: he sings, conducts, composes, and arranges music spanning many eras and genres, all with the goal of compelling expression of text. He is thrilled to begin his tenure as Music Director of Ars Musica Chorale with the 2019-20 season.
Brian is the founder and artistic director of the American Prize-winning vocal ensemble The New Consort, which is dedicated to juxtaposing works from diverse musical genres and eras and drawing them into conversation with one another. He is also a co-founder of ChamberQUEER, a chamber music collective aiming to highlight the voices of LGBTQ+ composers and performers through performances, educational workshops, and community events. Brian has guest conducted ensembles including The Thirteen and the Choir of Gonville & Caius College, Cambridge, in venues spanning six continents.
As a vocalist, Brian specializes in music of the Baroque, having appeared as a soloist with organizations including Holy Trinity Bach Vespers, the Academy of Sacred Drama, Bach Akademie of Charlotte, and Spire Chamber Ensemble. Ever the musical omnivore, he has also swung with the New York Pops at Carnegie Hall, sung the music of Vaughan Williams and Schubert with the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra, and premiered new works by composers including Julian Anderson, Frances Pollock, David Lang, Hannah Lash, and Tim Holt. Brian’s operatic roles include Aeneas in Dido and Aeneas, Bob in The Old Maid and the Thief, Mother in Kurt Weill’s Die Sieben Todsünden, Demetrius in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and Apollo in both Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo and Charpentier’s Orphée, in addition to a broad oratorio & concert repertoire ranging from Buxtehude’s Membra Jesu Nostri to Pärt’s PASSIO.
Brian holds a Bachelor of Arts in Music from Yale University, where he served as the musical director of the Whiffenpoofs, America’s oldest collegiate a cappella group, for their Centennial year; a Master of Music in Voice from the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University, where he studied with William Sharp and received the George Castelle Memorial Award in Voice; and a Master of Music degree with Distinction in Choral Studies from the University of Cambridge, Trinity College, where he studied with several major British conductors including Stephen Layton and Tim Brown.
To learn more about Brian, visit www.brianmummert.com.
YiKyung Diana Hughes | Pianist
A native of Seoul, South Korea, Diana holds a Doctorate in piano performance from Rutgers University. She received both a Masters and Bachelors degree in piano from the Mannes School of Music in New York City. As a soloist, chamber musician and orchestral pianist, Diana has performed in South Korea, Spain, the USA and Canada. In 1989 she was a finalist in the Young Artist International competition in NYC. In 1994 she performed at Carnegie’s Weill recital hall. In 2002 she was one of three organists to receive the George Bryant award for organ.
Diana has been an artist in residence at York College, PA, the Evaristo Valle Museum in Gijon, Spain and a faculty member of Teajon College in Seoul, S. Korea. Currently she is on the faculty at Montclair State University and Bergen Community College. She is also Choir Director/Organist of the New City United Methodist Church and pianist for the Rockland Camerata. Diana freelances as a soloist, chamber musician and accompanist in the greater New York area. She resides in Old Tappan, NJ.
Marjorie Vandervoort | Concert Mistress
Marjorie Vandervoort began her long association with Ars Musica Chorale in the early 1980s. She has served as soprano soloist and associate/assistant conductor under founder Joyce Keshner, Italo Marchini, Robert Long, Kelly Crandell and Dusty Francis. She took part in all the concert trips to Europe, conducting and soloing in Belgium in 1983 and subsequent trips.
Marge is now in her 27th year as Music Director of the Ridgewood Choral, a women’s chorus established by Frank Kasschau in 1929. Her conducting experience also includes work as assistant conductor of the Rockland Camerata, guest conductor of Harmony Basket Chorus (a choir of Japanese women), and church choirs.
She grew up in Ridgewood, NJ, where she studied piano with Howard Kasschau and Florence Monell Marble. A resident of Closter for over 60 years, she and her late husband Robert raised three daughters; grandchildren and great-grandchildren complete the family. She has an art and custom-framing business, The Mirage Portfolio.