- Karen Grylls
Karen Grylls, ONZM, Associate Head of Undergraduate Studies, Associate-Professor in Conducting and Head of Choral Studies at the University of Auckland, directed the Auckland Dorian Choir (1985-1998), and assumed the position of Artistic Director of TOWER New Zealand Youth Choir in 1989. Karen founded TOWER Voices New Zealand in March 1998.In addition to being the current Artistic Director of both these national choirs Karen also directs the University of Auckland Chamber Choir.
A graduate of both Otago and Auckland Universities, Karen studied post-graduate Conducting and Music Theory at the University of Washington, Seattle where she studied for four years with Professors John Rahn, Abraham Kaplan and Joan Catoni-Conlon. In 1985 she returned to NZ to teach at the University of Auckland take up the directorship of the Auckland Dorian Choir.
As a result of her musical directorship, the prestigious National Youth Choir of NZ has enjoyed notable international successes including: the Silver Rosebowl in the “Let the Peoples Sing” radio competition in 1992, the “Choir of the World” at the 1999 International Eisteddfod in Llangollen and the “Grand Prix Slovakia” also in 1999. With equal success TOWER Voices New Zealand won first and second placings in the mixed choir section of the Tolosa International Choral Competition in October 1998. With these choirs, she has participated and won further prizes and accolades in Gorizia 2004 and Marktoberdorf 2005.
Karen is much in demand as a choral clinician and has many CD recordings to her credit. Invitations to adjudicate have taken her to Australia, Singapore, Tolosa and Hong Kong. In 1996 the university honoured her with a Distinguished Teaching Award in Music and in 1999 she received a New Year’s Hounour ONZM for her services to choral music. Karen has recently been appointed to the board of the International Federation for Choral Music IFCM. In May 2005 she was awarded an Artistic Leadership Scholarship Award 2005 from Creative New Zealand to attend the Seventh World Choral Symposium in Kyoto. Most recently she was awarded the KBB Citation for Services to NZ music from the Composers’ Association of NZ.Source: http://www.youthchoir.org.nz/info_conductor.htm