About Us

Nova Scotia Youth Wind Ensemble Committee

Photo of Dr. Mark Hopkins

Dr. Mark Hopkins, Artistic Director

Dr. Mark Hopkins is a Professor in the School of Music at Acadia University in Wolfville, Nova Scotia. At Acadia University he is founding conductor of the Wind Ensemble, teaches undergraduate and graduate Conducting courses plus other Music Education, SoundPainting, and chamber music courses.

Dr. Hopkins is in-demand as a guest conductor and music education consultant. In 2003 Dr. Hopkins was appointed Associate Conductor of the Denis Wick Canadian Wind Orchestra, an honour ensemble that selects some of the best young players in Canada through annual national auditions. He led the 2019 National Youth Band of Canada in seven performances across Manitoba.  He is Artistic Director of the Nova Scotia Youth Wind Ensemble (2008-2011, 2013-present), and is Past-President of the Nova Scotia Band Association. Along with composer Derek Charke, Dr. Hopkins organized “Shattering the Silence”, an innovative new music festival (visit http://www.shatteringthesilence.ca to learn more.) He can be heard leading the WIRED! Ensemble on the cd’s LIVE WIRED!(2015) and In Sonorous Falling Tones (2017).

Dr. Hopkins received a 2019 National Band Award from the Canadian Band Association, and an “Established Artist Award” from Arts Nova Scotia in 2016 for his work as a professional conductor.  In Canada he has guest-conducted bands and orchestras in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia, Ontario, and Quebec. Abroad, he has led collegiate and professional performances in the United States, Bermuda, Hong Kong, China, Japan, Italy, Switzerland, and Romania.

A native of Toronto, Dr. Hopkins earned his Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the New England Conservatory while serving as Assistant to Frank L. Battisti, and was awarded the Gunther Schuller Medal at graduation. From 2002-2005 he led ensembles and taught at the University of Calgary in Alberta. Dr. Hopkins taught music in high schools for twelve years, including seven years’ service as Chair of the Music Department at Upper Canada College in Toronto. His professional work as a Conductor spans the full range of ensembles and genres.

B. Mus. University of Toronto
B. Ed. University of Western Ontario
M. Mus. University of Calgary
D.M.A.            New England Conservatory
SoundPainting Certification Level 1



Hope Gendron, Executive Director

Hope (Tartalone) Gendron is a retired instrumental music teacher and grandmother.

Born and raised in Pennsylvania, USA, she received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Music Education from Clarion University of Pennsylvania. In 2014, Hope received a Master of Education in Curriculum Studies, focusing on music education, from Acadia University in Wolfville, Nova Scotia.

Based on her experience in America’s Youth in Concert, including a European tour at age 16, Hope is inspired to give back to young musicians.

In 2015-16, she conducted the Nova Scotia Junior Wind Ensemble .

As chairman of the Nova Scotia Youth Wind Ensemble, Hope provides the province’s aspiring young musicians with opportunities and challenges. She rejuvenated the NSYWE almost 20 years ago with the help of a few brave music teachers and retired musicians

As Executive Director of the Nova Scotia Band Association, Hope supports music teachers and community musicians in the province.

She continues to play French Horn with the Sackville Community Band, Acadia University Wind Ensemble, Glass Winds and the Chester Brass Ensemble.  Hope has also played with Scotia Brass, Chebucto Symphony Orchestra, the Nova Scotia Royal International Tattoo and the Greater Victoria Concert Band in Victoria, British Columbia.

NSYWE Committee Members:

Mitchell Jones, Treasurer
Zoë Strutt, Percussion Coordinator
James LeBlanc, Assistant Treasurer
Kevin Finch, Photographer
Ruth Blackie
Amy Cameron
Dr. Tristan De Borba
Luke Henderson
Sarah MacDonald
Lauren Park
Lauryn Wadden
Dylan Rutledge, Student Liaison, Acadia University
Anneka Dunewald, Student Liaison, Acadia University