James Sommerville is joining the organization as its inaugural Artistic Director 

November 21, 2022

In addition to recently announcing Christie Gray as our new CEO, NYO Canada is thrilled to share that James (Jamie) Sommerville is joining the organization as its inaugural Artistic Director as of November 21, 2022.

Jamie’s involvement with NYO spans 40 years, starting in his youth as an orchestra member from 1982 to 1984. Over the years, Jamie has served NYO Canada as a guest artist, a faculty member, and as a member of the board of directors. He retires at the end of 2022 after a glittering 25-year career as Principal Horn of the Boston Symphony Orchestra; he has also been a member of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, the Montreal Symphony Orchestra, the Canadian Opera Company Orchestra, and Symphony Nova Scotia. A Juno Award-winning soloist and chamber musician and Music Director of the Hamilton Philharmonic from 2007 to 2014, his depth and breadth of musical experience make him ideally suited to the role of Artistic Director.

“Jamie and Christie make a terrific team and secure NYO’s position as Canada’s premier orchestra training institute. Jamie is a star musician and will be a huge asset in attracting talented students and faculty to the program, said Kevin Latimer, NYO’s Chair of the Board.

“Serving NYO Canada has always been the greatest honour and privilege, and this is an exciting new chapter. The musical world of 2022 is charged with challenge and opportunity, and it falls to our talented young Canadian artists to imagine all that an orchestra of the future can be. I have big dreams for NYO, and I’m looking forward to working with Christie, bringing my international experience to the team, and helping our musicians to become creators and leaders, “ said Jamie.

Christie Gray shared, “I couldn’t be happier to have Jamie lead our orchestral training and artistic programming and bring his vision to the organization. Great things await NYO; there is so much that we’ll accomplish together.”

The National Youth Orchestra of Canada (NYO) is a not-for-profit charitable organization with the mission to recruit the best young classical musicians from across Canada and prepare them for careers as professional orchestral musicians. Since its founding in 1960, NYO has evolved into an internationally recognized incubator for young orchestral musicians and is now considered among the leading youth orchestras in the world.