Juliet Palmer

composer, sound artist and performer

Juliet Palmer’s music has come to life under a highway off-ramp, in a swimming pool, in the plastic flotsam of a remote beach and in concert halls across North America, Europe and Oceania. Originally from Aotearoa New Zealand, Juliet makes her home in Toronto where she is artistic director of Urbanvessel, a platform for interdisciplinary collaboration.

Recent works: fire break (Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra) for forests past and future; Choreography of Trauma (The Element Choir, Continuum ensemble and video) celebrates the thousands of small gestures that save a life; Oil & Water (Detroit Symphony Orchestra) chronicles the ecological and political watershed; Every Word Was Once An Animal with artists Carla Bengtson and Jessie Rosa Vala and choreographer Darion Smith (Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art, Oregon) explores inter-species communication through dance, music, scent and image; Ukiyo, floating world (Urbanvessel and Thin Edge New Music) follows the drift of ideas and plastic across oceans; while the a cappella opera Sweat is a window into the lives of the unseen millions who work to clothe us (CalArts, Los Angeles; Bicycle Opera, Canada; National Sawdust, New York).

Recordings include: small excesses (Atoll ) and rivers, (Barnyard Records). Forthcoming: Sweat, feature film directed by Jennifer Nichols with cinematography by Ash Tailor-Jones (Bicycle Opera). 

Juliet was composer-in-residence at the New Zealand School of Music and Orchestra Wellington (2011/12), and an OAC Artist-in-Residence at Sunnybrook Research Institute (2018). She is the winner of the Detroit Symphony’s Elaine 2018 Lebenbom Award, a Chalmers Arts Fellow (2018-19), and two-time finalist for the Johanna Metcalf Performing Arts Prize (2019, 2021). She is Board President of the Canadian New Music Network / Reseau Canadien pour les Musiques Nouvelles.

Juliet holds a PhD in composition from Princeton University and an M.Mus in performance, composition and time-based art from Auckland University.