Alysoun Kegel, Artistic Director

An accomplished conductor, music teacher, and soprano, Alysoun Kegel has been working as the choir director and K-4 music instructor at Worthington Hooker since 2019. 

Aly began singing as an 8-yr-old treble in the St. Luke’s Girls Choir of Evanston, Illinois, under the direction of Richard Webster. She began her work in conducting in 2002, as musical director of Yale University’s Whim N’ Rhythm, giving performances in Japan, South Korea, Italy, France and the United Kingdom. From 2007-2011 she served as Artistic Director of the PALS Children’s Chorus in Brookline, MA preparing young people to sing under the batons of Sir Colin Davis, Raphael Frühbeck de Burgos, David Hoose, and Bernard Haitink. 

Aly completed her MM in conducting at Carnegie Mellon University, where she studied with Maestro Robert Page. She has led choral workshops throughout the US, as well as in South Korea, Ghana, and Somaliland. She served as the Head of Choral and Vocal Music at Choate Rosemary Hall from 2013-2019, leading the Chamber Chorus on tour in China, South Korea, Norway, and Sweden. Aly was a charter member of the Yale Schola Cantorum, a 24-voice ensemble specializing in early and contemporary music. She worked in the Boston area as staff soprano at Trinity Church in Copley Square and at Church of the Redeemer, Chestnut Hill. She graduated from Yale with a Bachelor of Arts in Music and English, and received her first MM in Dalcroze Studies from the Longy School of Music.

Ethan Haman, Collaborative Pianist

Ethan Haman from the San Francisco Bay Area is the staff accompanist for the Greater New Haven Community Chorus and director of music for the Episcopal Church at Yale. He is also the organist and associate director of music at Noroton Presbyterian Church in Darien, CT, and staff accompanist for the Yale Institute of Sacred Music. He holds MM and MMA degrees in organ performance from Yale, as well as a BM degree in composition and organ performance from the University of Southern California, and has gone on several sponsored study trips to Paris and Lyon for immersion into the French tradition of organ performance and improvisation on historic instruments.

Ethan regularly performs throughout the United States and internationally both as an organ recitalist and in collaboration with various ensembles, and his recitals often feature extensive improvisations. He has performed and recorded in 23 states and 10 countries, including such notable venues as Davies Symphony Hall in San Francisco, the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, Trinity Church Wall Street in NYC, Notre Dame d’Auteuil in Paris, and the Grote Kerk of St. Bavo in Haarlem, the Netherlands.

In addition to his performance activities, Ethan teaches improvisation both privately and in workshops for universities as well as local chapters of the American Guild of Organists, and regularly composes new choral and keyboard music. He enjoys recording organ and improvisation videos for his YouTube channel as well as studying foreign languages; he currently speaks English, French, Spanish, European Portuguese, Cantonese, Mandarin Chinese, and is currently learning German and Korean.

Yiran Zhao, Choral Conducting Assistant

Conductor, composer, pianist, and soprano Yiran Zhao is the choir and piano teacher at Educational Center for the Arts (ACES), and she is a postgraduate teaching fellow at Yale Music in Schools Initiative where she works with the All-City Choir. She is the assistant conductor of Civic Orchestra of New Haven, organist at First Baptist Church in New Haven, and soprano at Episcopal Church at Yale. Yiran was the director of Yale Divinity School (Marquand) Chapel Choir, Xiaofeng Arts Choir, and music director at Christ the King Lutheran Church in Kendall Park, NJ. As a professional soprano, her singing collaborations include Julliard 415, Apollo’s Fire, Yale Schola Cantorum, VOCES8 US Scholars and Yale Choral Artists. She actively receives commissions and her compositions have been performed in public in the US, Europe, and Asia.

Yiran started playing the piano at the age of 4, and she joined Beijing Philharmonic Choir at the age of 8. She holds a Master of Music in Choral Conducting from Yale School of Music (Robert Shaw Prize), where she studied conducting with André Thomas, David Hill, and Jeffrey Douma, and voice with Sherezade Panthaki and Kate Maroney. She received her Bachelor of Music dual degrees in Piano and Theory & Composition from Westminster Choir College, summa cum laude. She was a soprano concertist in Westminster Symphonic Choir’s production of Bach’s B Minor Mass with the Philadelphia Orchestra and Yannick Nézet-Séguin.