Leadership

Melodia Leadership Team

Jenny Clarke

Executive Director

Jenny Clarke combined her lifelong love of choral music and her career as an arts administrator to form Melodia in 2003. She has a B.A. in music and English from Leeds University, England, and an M.A. in arts management from New York University. In addition to singing with Melodia – her true passion – Jenny has sung with the Royal Choral Society in England, and Riverside Choral Society in New York, performing at venues including Avery Fisher Hall (Mostly Mozart Festival), Alice Tully Hall, Carnegie Hall, Symphony Space, and Merkin Concert Hall. Jenny has worked extensively in arts administration in music, theater, and dance in London including at the South Bank Concert Halls, the Royal Court Theatre and London Sinfonietta, and – for the past 29 years – in New York, including at Symphony Space, the NYC Arts in Education Roundtable, and Chamber Music America. Jenny is the Executive Director of the National Flute Association.

Cynthia Powell

Founding Artistic Director and Conductor

Cynthia Powell celebrates her 17th season with Melodia. A graduate of Westminster Choir College, she has worked with many musical groups in the NY metropolitan area and has conducted major works for chorus and orchestra. She has served on the guest faculty at Sarah Lawrence College, led the St. George’s Choral Society in NYC, and was a guest conductor at the International Choral Festival in Havana, Cuba. She is also the Artistic Director of the Stonewall Chorale, and Organist/Choirmaster of Temple Sinai in Tenafly, NJ. Her passion for music and commitment to the choral art is coupled with a desire to generate awareness and funds for timely causes, and she has produced recitals, oratorios and concerts to benefit Bailey House, a homeless residence for people with AIDS, for Doctors Without Borders, the Pastors for Peace Cuba Caravan, and Water is Life, Kenya.

Taisiya Pushkar

Collaborative Pianist

Described as ‘a graceful pianist’, with an ‘impeccable sense of timing’, Taisiya Pushkar is in demand as a dynamic performer and a sensitive collaborator. A long- time musical partnership with the cellist Amber Docters van Leeuwen has led to the recording of their debut CD “Flavours”, which has been released on the Brilliant Classics label. Together, the duo has made their debut at Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall in New York, and at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam. Dr. Pushkar has been on the faculty of the Lucy Moses School at Kaufman Center, the Ethical Culture Fieldston School and the Horace Mann School, and is a teaching artist for the Manhattan School of Music Distance Learning Program. In 2019, Taisiya joined the Young People’s Chorus of New York City as their first full time collaborative pianist. Dr. Taisiya Pushkar holds a Bachelor’s Degree from Oberlin College, and a MM and DMA Degrees from the Manhattan School of Music. Taisiya has been the official pianist of the Melodia Women’s Choir since 2009. http://www.taisiyapushkar.com.

Board Of Directors

Jenny Clarke (President)
Blesssing Agunwamba
Sally Collins
Cynthia L. Cooper
Kerry Fristoe
Viven Lau
Maggie Ress
Susan Xenarios

Advisory Committee

Kathleen Chalfant
Lauren Flanigan
Maria Gamborg Helbekkmo
Cynthia Hopkins
Deborah Home
Laura Kaminsky
Tania Léon
Meredith Monk
Kathleen Supové