Encore Creativity is pleased to announce the appointment of Brian J. Isaac as the new Artistic Director. Isaac came onboard beginning September 7, 2021 to fill the vacancy of retiring Founder and Artistic Director, Jeanne Kelly.
“The Board of Directors of Encore is very pleased to present Brian Isaac as the new Artistic Director of Encore,” said Anthony Tambasco, President. “Those who participated in Encore University last fall already met Brian in the courses he offered. He is smart, well organized, impeccably trained, experienced, sensitive in his work with chorales, and committed to the mission of Encore Creativity. We welcome him and look forward to his taking over the leadership of our many chorales.”
Isaac holds a Master of Music in Music Education from the Peabody Conservatory of the Johns Hopkins University, and a Bachelor of Music Education from Old Dominion University. A former Marine, Brian also holds a Bachelor of Science in English from the United States Naval Academy.
“I am humbled and honored to be selected as Artistic Director with Encore Creativity for Older Adults, following in the footsteps of the incredible Jeanne Kelly,” stated Isaac. “ For the past 15 years, Jeanne and the Encore team have developed a world-class organization dedicated to creating meaningful music education and performance opportunities for older adults. Encore’s mission resonates with me deeply, and its work in supporting those living with early-stage dementia, as well as their families and caregivers, is particularly inspiring. I sincerely look forward to getting to know and work with the talented, enthusiastic, and dedicated musicians in the Encore community soon.”In addition to this new post, Isaac is also the Artistic Director of the Alexandria Choral Society (Alexandria, VA) and Founder/Artistic Director of Church Circle Singers (Annapolis, MD). He was most recently the Managing Director for Arts Laureate, a recording team that delivered over 1500 virtual performances across the country during the pandemic. Previous appointments include Artistic Director of the Williamsburg Choral Guild (Williamsburg, VA); music faculty at Encore University; Interim Director of Choral Music at Thomas Nelson Community College (Hampton, VA); adjunct music faculty at Tidewater Community College (Portsmouth, VA) and Old Dominion University (Norfolk, VA); Assistant Conductor with the Washington Master Chorale (Washington, D.C.); and Director of Choirs at Damascus High School (Damascus, MD).
Isaac’s professional and community ensembles have commissioned and premiered new works by composers such as Tawnie Olson, Lori Laitman, Christopher Hoh, Jonathan Kolm, and Ola Gjeilo. Reviews include: “perfectly brilliant” (composer Dr. William Averitt, Shenandoah Conservatory); and having “fine balance” and “delivering sounds that ranged from sensitively soft to knock your socks off soaring” (Virginia Gazette). In addition to conducting, Brian maintains an active professional singing schedule and has performed with organizations like the Virginia Symphony, the Virginia Chorale, and the Washington Master Chorale, among others.
The retiring Kelly has nothing but high praise for her successor. “Encore has been my baby….my third daughter, and I am thrilled to know Brian Isaac will take very good care of my pride and joy,” Kelly stated. “He is an excellent musician; his conducting is superb, and he is passionate about community and music. He has the skills and the drive to take Encore to the next level,” she continued.