Ms. Nova became executive director of Three Rivers Young Peoples Orchestras at the start of the 2011-12 season. During her tenure, TRYPO has dramatically expanded its program offerings (such as through Youth Chamber Connection, new summer programs, outreach programs, touring, etc.), significantly increased the number of students it serves annually (up 83%), and created numerous new community partnerships (Duquesne University, Pittsburgh Youth Symphony Orchestra, Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, Chautauqua Institute, Pittsburgh Youth Chorus, etc.), resulting in a thriving and fiscally sound organization that is truly making a difference in the lives of Pittsburgh’s musically talented youth.
Ms. Nova has a Bachelor’s of Music Performance in French Horn from the Eastman School of Music, where she also received the prestigious Performer’s Certificate, and a Bachelor’s of Arts in French from the University of Rochester. After graduating from Eastman, she spent a year as a guest lecturer at the Université de Rennes II in Rennes, France before earning a Master’s of Music Performance in French Horn from the University of Utah. She was the Director of Operations for Utah Symphony | Utah Opera prior to moving to Pittsburgh with her husband James Nova, who is the second/utility trombonist of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra.
Ms. Nova also continues to consult with Classical Singer: a magazine, online community, and annual convention. Classical Singer was founded by Ms. Nova’s mother, Carla Wood, who was a successful mezzo-soprano and was responsible for Ms. Nova’s early exposure to the arts and eventual addiction to the pursuit of sustainable arts administration. Ms. Nova continues to freelance in the Pittsburgh area when her schedule allows, and also serves on the board of the Pittsburgh Jazz Orchestra, the New Leadership Council of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, and the Arts Advisory Council of the Pittsburgh Public Schools. She also is proud to be a member of this year’s Leadership Pittsburgh XXXIV class.
Ana María Díaz
Ana María Díaz is a graduate of Duquesne University where she majored in cello performance with Misha Quint. Ms. Díaz began her musical studies in her native Venezuela as a member of the famous Youth Orchestra Program known as “El Sistema;” she studied music at Conservatorio de Música “Vicente Emilio Sojo,” Conservatorio Superior de Música “Simón Bolívar” and Centro Universitario de Estudios Musicales (IUDEM) under the guidance of Miguel Rojas and William Molina and served in the faculty of Conservatorio de Música “Vicente Emilio Sojo” where she taught cello, kinder music, theory & solfege and coached the cello sections for the children and youth orchestras. Ms. Díaz has performed in Altoona Symphony Orchestra, Johnstown Symphony Orchestra, McKeesport Symphony and Washington County Symphony Orchestra. Currently, Ms. Díaz is the Program Manager of Three Rivers Young Peoples Orchestras; she is a member of Butler County Symphony Orchestra, and teaches cello at the Elizabeth Seton Center and the Hope Academy of Music and the Arts.
YC2 and Special Projects Manager
Ms. Cunningham has been managing chamber groups since her son started a string quartet at age 8. Ms. Cunningham is a passionate supporter of youth ensembles, and began a summer chamber music camp in Chautauqua, NY, along with her husband Jim Cunningham of WQED-FM. Ms. Cunningham earned a Masters in Teaching from Chatham University, and is a sought-after substitute teacher in many Pittsburgh area public and private schools. She has a background in development and project management, and has worked for WQED-TV, Carnegie Museums, and the Coalition for Christian Outreach.
Marketing and Community Engagement Manager
Rachel Howard serves both TRYPO and Pittsburgh Youth Chorus (PYC) as the Marketing and Community Engagement Manager. This brand-new position promotes both organizations – reaching as many young students as possible and enriching their lives with music, lifelong friendships, and unbelievable experiences.
After starting at the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra (PSO) working in concert production nearly a decade ago, Rachel eventually expanded her role to take on artistic planning for the PNC Pops Series and all popular programming performances. Rachel brought fresh programs to the stage including the live orchestral performance of Tim Burton’s ‘The Nightmare Before Christmas’ and A Night of Symphonic Hip Hop featuring Nelly – successfully expanding the PSO’s reach in the Pittsburgh community.
She knows music appreciation and education enhance our lives and looks forward to discovering new ways to meaningfully engage audiences and get the word out about the amazing programs TRYPO and PYC have to offer. In addition to her extensive arts management experience, Rachel is an accomplished harpist and was awarded first place in Duquesne University’s Women’s Advisory Board Scholarship Competition in 2005. Rachel holds a Bachelor of Music Degree in Music Technology, concentrating in Sound Recording Technology and Harp Performance, from Duquesne University and a Master of Arts Management degree from Carnegie Mellon University.
Rana Jurjus, a recent graduate from Carnegie Mellon University, joined TRYPO and PYC as their new shared office coordinator at the beginning of their 2017-2018 season. She is an active freelance French hornist throughout Pittsburgh, and plays with the local group The Brass Roots. She holds her Masters degree in French horn performance from CMU and a Bachelors of music from Baldwin Wallace University.
Program Assistant and Librarian
Mr. Whitt is from Pittsburgh and just graduated with a Music Education degree at Duquesne University, studying double bass with Jeff Mangone. He is also the orchestra director at Eden Hall Upper Elementary School in the Pine Richland School District, in addition to maintaining a private teaching studio in the south hills. Mr. Whitt has been with TRYPO since the start of the 2015-16 season.