Melanie de Jesus is a WYSO alumna with performance degrees in viola from the Jacobs School, where she served in leadership roles in four orchestras over five years. She is a board member of Bach Around the Clock and the interim Artistic Director for the 2022 festival. In 2019, she founded the nonprofit Madison Conservatory to provide elite training to aspiring music students of all ages and from all walks of life.
As the Director of Madison Conservatory, she has promoted international partnerships with elite orchestral musicians, and seen the faculty and student body grow by leaps and bounds. She loves WYSO, and has been involved in many programs over the years including teaching the Endangered Instruments “Viola Explorers” workshop series, coaching chamber music, teaching private lessons, and audition and competition prep. Members of her viola studio won WYSO concerto competitions in 2018 and 2021, the first violists to do so in over a decade. She has been inspiring and empowering young musicians in Madison since 2010 as a Madison Music Makers teacher, and has been WYSO’s viola section coach since 2011.