Francisco J. Núñez

Francisco J. Núñez, a MacArthur Fellow and Musical America’s 2018 Educator of the Year, is a composer, conductor, visionary, leading figure in music education, and the artistic director/founder of the Young People’s Chorus of New York City (YPC). In establishing YPC, he has created an awareness of the ability of young people to rise to unforeseen heights of artistry and recognition among composers of the child’s voice as a significant instrument for making music. The New York Times has praised him for “raising the bar [for children’s choruses] by commissioning a steady stream of works from composers who usually write for adults.”

Mr. Núñez also leads the University Glee Club of New York City, its fifth conductor since the all-men’s chorus was established in 1894, is sought after as a guest conductor and master teacher by orchestras and choirs nationwide and is a collaborator with arts organizations worldwide. He recently curated an art installation with High Line Nine of live performances, video, art, and film, highlighted by the YPC premieres of 15 works of music Mr. Núñez has commissioned from among today’s most distinguished and innovative composers, presented along with poetry written and recorded by the choristers. The many achievements of YPC have led Mr. Núñez to establish YPC National, which is now expanding the YPC model to children’s choruses beyond New York City.

As a composer Mr. Núñez creates countless compositions and arrangements in all musical formats and styles for choirs, orchestras, and solo instruments. Among his many awards and honors are ASCAP’s Victor Herbert Award, the New York Choral Society’s Choral Excellence Award, and Bang on a Can’s Visionary Award. NYU Steinhardt has presented him with its Distinguished Alumnus Achievement Award, and he holds honorary Doctor of Music degrees from both Ithaca College and Gettysburg College.