CONDUCTOR, EDUCATOR, COMPOSER
Chris Maunu is a conductor, educator, composer, and professional singer based in the Denver-Metro area. A GRAMMY® nominated educator, he is the newly appointed Artistic Director of the renowned Pacific Youth Choir in Portland, Oregon. He spent the previous 17 years as Director of Choral Activities at Arvada West High School. A passionate advocate for music education, Mr. Maunu was named a Finalist for the 2018, 2020, 2021, and 2022 GRAMMY® Music Educator of the Year Awards. He was also winner of the 2019 and 2020 CMA® National Music Teacher of Excellence Award. Choirs under Maunu’s direction have performed at 13 music conferences, including National and Regional ACDA. Maunu's ensembles have won the American Prize in Choral Performance, as well as the Gold Diploma at the Rimini International Choral Competition in Italy.
Mr. Maunu was named the Colorado Community Media "2019 Best of the Best" Teacher. He also received the Distinguished Alumni Award from Northern State University where he delivered the 2018 Commencement Address. Chris was a recipient of a Commendation from the 71st House of Representatives for his work as a music educator.
Chris has enjoyed serving as a clinician for all state and honor choirs from Hawaii to England. He is also an accomplished composer, and his award winning compositions have been performed by choirs all over the world. An active member of NAfME and ACDA, Chris served 6 years as the Tenor/Bass and High School Chair for Colorado ACDA and is a past member of the CMEA Vocal Music Council. Maunu is a contributing author to "A Choral Conductor's Companion," published by Meredith Music and distributed by Hal Leonard. He has had numerous articles published by the Choral Journal and other publications. He is in demand as a lecturer, having delivered many conference presentations, including National ACDA.
Mr. Maunu was co-founder and artistic director of Colorado’s Anima Chamber Ensemble, an 501(c)3 professional choir. He held that position for 7 years.
Chris holds a Master of Music degree from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and a Bachelor of Music Education from Northern State University in South Dakota. He enjoys sharing his life with his beautiful wife Aleisha, and their amazing children, Bodhi and Astraea.