Korean-Canadian conductor, music educator, vocal pedagogue and soprano, Jennifer Min-Young Lee is rapidly establishing herself as an emerging artist in the Toronto music scene.
Lee recently completed her third season as Associate Conductor of the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir where she conducted season concerts, Singsation Saturday outreach programs, and prepared the ensemble for regular appearances with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. During her appointment, she prepared the chorus for TSO in multiple performances including Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, Brahms’ German Requiem, Vaughan William’s Sea Symphony, Walton’s Belshazzar’s Feast, Handel’s Messiah and Ravel’s Daphnis et Chloe under the baton of world-renowned conductors including Peter Oundjin, Sir Andrew Davis, Bramwell Tovey and Juanjo Mena.
As a passionate advocate for music education, Lee is committed to educating and inspiring young musicians. Since 2008, She has been employed as a full-time high school music teacher in York Region District School Board. She teaches vocal, piano accompanying, instrumental and repertoire classes, and choral and wind ensembles under her leadership regularly perform and receive recognition at festivals in Canada, United States and Europe.
Committed to choral excellence, Lee has worked with the complete spectrum of voices- from children's and youth choirs, university and community choirs, to professional choirs. She was assistant conductor of the Bach Chamber Youth Choir for five seasons, as well as the Ontario Youth Choir. In Rochester, she directed numerous ensembles including Aldersgate Methodist Chancel Choir, Repertory Singers, Eastman Chamber Singers, Bach Cantata Series and University of Rochester Women’s Chorus. As a passionate vocal pedagogue, she also maintained a private voice studio as a secondary voice teacher at the Eastman School of Music.
Equally experienced in orchestral conducting, Lee made her professional orchestral conducting debut in Toronto with the Orchestra Toronto during the 2015/2016 season, with whom she will continue to serve as Assistant Conductor. She participated in numerous International Orchestral Conducting masterclasses and worked with professional orchestras including the Ruse Philharmonic Orchestra and the Malaga Philharmonic Orchestra.
In addition to conducting and teaching, she enjoys singing both as a soloist and chorister. As an active soloist, she participated in numerous professional music programs. Lee has studied with renowned composers, singers and coaches, including Martin Katz, Rudolph Janson, Craig Smith, Mary Morrison, Rosemary Landry, John Harbison and Jake Heggie to name a few. Her operatic roles include the Spirit and Queen of the Night from Die Zauberflöte, Susanna from Le Nozze di Figaro, Nannetta from Falstaff and Adina from L'Elisir d'Amour. As a chorister, Lee sang in numerous ensembles including Exultate Chamber Singers, Eastman Chorale, Repertory Singers, Eastman Rochester Chorus, Schola Cantorum (for weekly compline services), and Collegium Musicum (an early music ensemble specialized in repertoire ranging from the sixteenth to eighteenth-century solo cantatas, madrigals, oratorios and operas). She also sang with Voices, a professional ensemble based in Rochester, New York.
Jennifer Min-Young Lee holds a Master of Music degree in Conducting from the Eastman School of Music, Rochester, where she studied choral conducting with Dr. William Weinert and orchestral conducting with Brad Lubman. In addition to conducting, she studied voice and completed graduate vocal pedagogy studies under the tutelage of Robert McIver. Jennifer Min-Young Lee holds Bachelor of Music and Bachelor of Education degrees from the University of Western Ontario, London, with additional studies at the University of Toronto. Outside of formal training, Lee has served as a conducting fellow for the Malaga Philharmonic Orchestra Masterclass in Spain, Allegra International Orchestral Conducting Institute in Bulgaria, Yale School of Music Norfolk Chamber Music Festival, Eastman Advanced Conducting Institute, Orchestra Toronto Apprentice Program, and Tafelmusik Baroque Summer Institute. She has studied conducting with Johannes Schlaefli, Mark Gibson, James Lowe, Joseph Flummerfelt, Simon Carrington, Hilary Apfelstadt, Noel Edison, Mark Scatterday, Neil Varon, Timothy Reynish and Craig Kirchoff. Most recently, she participated and studied opera conducting at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music Summer Opera Bootcamp.
Nominated for the 2018 Leslie Bell Prize in Choral Conducting, Lee recently has been appointed as a new music director of the Yemel Philharmonic Society of Toronto and will be making her opera conducting debut in 2019. During 18/19 season, Lee will continue to serve the Young Nak Presbyterian Church of Toronto as a choir director and appear as a guest clinician/conductor for the Orchestra Toronto, CAMMAC’s Reading Session and various concerts in Toronto.