August 16, 2017

Hopewell Valley Youth Chorale’s New Directors

HV YOUTH CHORALE WELCOMES NEW DIRECTORS: Hopewell Valley Youth Chorale welcomes (from left) Managing Director Jennifer Ghannam, Preparatory Choir Director Ingrid Ladendorf, with founding director, Michele Alford.

The Board of Directors of Hopewell Valley Youth Chorale (HVYC) is pleased to announce the appointments of Ingrid Ladendorf as director of the preparatory choir and Jennifer Ghannam as managing director in charge of operations.

Ms. Ladendorf lived and taught in Manhattan for 16 years, at The Diller-Quaile School of Music before moving to New Jersey in 2010. At Diller-Quaile, she held positions including: musicianship department head, curriculum development specialist, undergraduate and graduate level teacher training course instructor. She is currently the early childhood advisor, rug concert program director and summer music institute director. Ms. Ladendorf has several years experience in the preschool classroom teaching inclusion classes for children on the autism spectrum. She currently conducts the Joyful Noise Choir in Princeton and is an adjunct at The College of New Jersey where she teaches the K-8 Music Education Practicum and serves as a student teaching supervisor.

HVYC’s new managing director, Jennifer Ghannam, was born and raised in northern California and landed in New Jersey six years ago by way of Chicago. She received her undergraduate degree at the University of California, Davis and her master of education at DePaul University. Having created her own business, Sticks and Stones Toy Shop in Hopewell, from conception to fruition, Ms. Ghannam comes to HVYC with resourcefulness, organizational skills, and the drive to get things done.

Co-founding director, Michele Alford will assume the position of concert choir director, previously held by her husband and co-founding director, William Alford. Mr. Alford stepped down this past spring after eleven years with HVYC. “So much of what HVYC is today is because of Bill’s belief that music nourishes the soul, brings people together, and can truly make the world a better place. Happily, he will continue his passion for choral music as the director of music at both The Pennington School and Pennington Presbyterian Church” said Mrs. Alford.

This is an exciting time for HVYC – new choristers, new staff, new music. “We are like kids ourselves at the beginning of each new season,” Ms. Alford reflects. “While there is some change, the mission stays the same: we want to instill strong values in our young people, to challenge our choristers to set high standards for themselves and to discover that, together, their gift of song can transform lives.”

The 2017-18 season begins in September 19 with weekly rehearsals at The Pennington School. For more information about joining Hopewell Valley Youth Chorale, visit the website at, email or call (609) 651-5474.