Nathan Leaf is thrilled to join The Concert Singers of Cary as Artistic Director starting in the 2017-18 season. Hailed by critics and artists alike for his artistic vision and technical precision, Leaf has established his place among the leading choral musicians in the Triangle.
In addition to directing The Concert Singers, Leaf is the Director of Choral Activities at North Carolina State University and the founder and artistic director of the chamber consort, Voices of a New Renaissance. During his tenure at NC State, the choral and vocal areas have experienced significant growth, with nearly twice as many students singing than before he came. His work with young singers emphasizes thoughtful musicality and healthy vocal production.
Leaf has served as a guest conductor and clinician across the United States, and choirs under his direction have toured extensively throughout the U.S. and abroad, including performances in England, Scotland, Ireland, France, and Italy. From 2008-2012, Dr. Leaf was the Chorus Master for North Carolina Opera, and in 2012 he was selected through national audition as one of six conductors featured at the Providence Renaissance Institute workshops and master classes with the British early music ensemble, I Fagiolini. In May of 2017, Leaf was honored to serve as conductor of the North Carolina Men’s All State Choir.
A versatile musician, Leaf has performed as a singer with some of the top vocal ensembles in the country, including eight seasons as a member of the Oregon Bach Festival Chorus in Eugene, Oregon, singing under the batons of Helmuth Rilling, Matthew Halls, Marin Alsop, Nicholas McGegan, and Jeffrey Kahane. He has also performed with the GRAMMY-winning Conspirare Company of Voices in Austin, Texas, the Tucson Chamber Artists in Arizona, and the Carnegie Hall Festival Chorus in New York City. In 2004, he toured Central Europe as member of the Swedish male choir Orphei Drängar. His stage credits as a conductor, singer, and orchestra member include productions of La Cenerentola, Rigoletto, Tosca, Faust, Carmen, Il Trovatore, Gianni Schicchi, Suor Angelica, Le Nozze di Figaro, A Little Night Music, and A Chorus Line, among others.
Dr. Leaf earned a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Valparaiso University (Indiana) and Master of Music and Doctor of Musical Arts degrees in choral conducting from the Butler School of Music at The University of Texas at Austin. A recipient of UT’s Bruton Graduate Fellowship, his research on Swedish choral music has earned several publications, including in a feature article in Choral Journal, the primary publication of the American Choral Directors Association.