bio

Jono Palmer is a dynamic and enterprising conductor from Auckland, New Zealand. His choirs have won national and international acclaim, including two Gold Medals at the 2015 Grand Prix of Nations in Magdeburg, Germany, and many awards at regional and national festivals of the NZCF Big Sing festival. As a conductor, Jono has been selected for masterclasses at the 2017 World Symposium of Choral Music and the 2017 National Collegiate Choral Organization National Conference. In October 2018, he was a finalist in the inaugural London International Choral Conducting Competition.

He has a particular research interest in choral works inspired by te ao Māori, especially in the influence of colonialization and cultural appropriation on New Zealand choral music, which is the topic of his doctoral dissertation. In 2019, he presented a paper at the national conference of the National Collegiate Choral Organization on the performance of kapahaka music by non-Māori choirs, and in 2021 he lead a round-table discussion at Indiana University on issues related to the appropriation and cultural borrowing of Indigenous music by Western composers.  

As a singer, Jono has been a member of the New Zealand Secondary Students Choir, the New Zealand Youth Choir, and Voices New Zealand Chamber Choir. Some of his solo engagements have included the role of Papageno in The Magic Flute (Class Act Opera), Superintendent Budd in Benjamin Britten’s Albert Herring (University of Auckland), a Christmas concert tour with Operatunity, and guest solo performances with the South Auckland Choral Society and Auckland Choral Society. Jono has also performed several times with the Bloomington Bach Cantata Project.

Jono has sung with many of Auckland’s leading choirs including the University of Auckland Chamber Choir, Musica Sacra, Viva Voce, Bach Musica, Holy Trinity Cathedral Choir, V8 Vocal Ensemble, Voices of the Age of Discovery, and Laudamus Vocal Ensemble. At Indiana University, he has performed regularly with the HPI ensemble Concentus, as well as NOTUS Contemporary Vocal Ensemble, University Singers, the Conductor’s Chorus, and the Singing Hoosiers.

Jono earned a MM in Choral Conducting from Indiana University, a BMus(hons) in Performance Voice, and a BA in Ancient History from the University of Auckland. He has recently completed coursework towards a doctorate in Choral Conducting at Indiana University’s Jacobs School of Music.

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