Praised for her “brilliant conducting skills” (Chicago Tribune) Kalena Bovell was named Music Director of the Civic Orchestra of New Haven and will begin her tenure for the 2018 – 2019 season.
Described as a conductor who possesses innate confidence and charisma, Kalena has held conducting fellowships with the Allentown Symphony and the Chicago Sinfonietta. As a fellow with Sinfonietta, she worked closely with Mei-Ann Chen and was part of Maestro Paul Freeman’s vision of fostering and promoting cultural diversity within classical music. Because of her success in the program, Kalena was made assistant conductor for the 2016 – 2017 season and made her professional debut with them as part of the MLK Tribute concerts in Chicago’s Symphony Center. Also, that year Kalena was a Semi Finalist for Marin Alsop’s prestigious Taki Concordia Fellowship. In 2015 she was awarded 3rd place in the American Prize for the college/university division.
Kalena has been fortunate to work with the Memphis Symphony Orchestra, St. Louis Symphony and the Hartford Symphony. She assisted Mei-Ann Chen for her final masterworks concert with the Memphis Symphony Orchestra, conducting the off-stage brass in Mahler’s First Symphony. She has also served as cover conductor to Gemma New, Carolyn Kuan, Bill Eddins and Gerard Schwartz. An active participant in workshops and festivals, Kalena has worked with renowned conductors Larry Rachleff, Donald Schleicher, Johannes Schlaefli, Maurice Peress, Jorge Mester, Diane Wittry, Kenneth Kiesler and has received coachings from Michael Morgan, Rossen Milanov, Gerard Schwarz and Bill Eddins.
Currently the Orchestra Director at the Loomis Chaffee School, Kalena received a Master’s Degree and Graduate Professional Diploma in instrumental conducting from The Hartt School. She was a student of Edward Cumming.