Jonathan Palmer spent the early part of his life in Bath, taking up the cello at the age of fifteen. He studied with Brian Greensmith in Yorkshire and then became an undergraduate at Reading University, where he studied composition with Andrew Byrne. Later he studied conducting with George Hurst and John Carewe and developed his compositional skills for a while under Sir Peter Maxwell Davies. He began his teaching career in Southampton, continued in Bruton, Somerset, diversified in Bermuda and finally settled in Bristol, where he was appointed as Director of Music at Clifton High School in 1994. He decided to retire in 2007 in order to concentrate on composition and recently completed his PhD in Composition at the University of Bristol. In August 2010 he was awarded the Raymond Warren Prize for Composition.
Over the years he has conducted numerous choirs and orchestras in many large-scale events. As well as being a professional double bass player, he is also a choral director for Choirs at Sea, and Director of Bristol South Music Centre, where he conducts a community orchestra of adults and students. During the summer of 2010 he was a music tutor at Marlborough Summer School, conducting the adult orchestra and directing a composersí workshop.
He was appointed conductor of Bristol Chamber Orchestra in May 2010 and Musical Director of Portishead Choral Society in September 2013.
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