Karen Thurman-Palmer



Areas of Expertise

  • Violin Performance and String Pedagogy
  • Beginning to Advanced String Ensemble Instruction
  • Youth Symphony Conducting

Professional Background

Karen Palmer received a Bachelor of Music degree in Music Education from Pacific Union College and a Master of Music in degree in Violin Performance from University of Redlands. She is an Artist Faculty member teaching Applied Violin and String Instrument Techniques. Karen is also a member of the School of Music Faculty Chamber Ensemble and was recorded performing live at Los Angeles Museum of the Arts (LAMA) and in a recent recording of “chants and hymns of voices ephemeral (2003) by School of Music composer, Anthony Suter. Mrs. Palmer is a tenured first violinist with the Redlands Symphony Orchestra and has served as Concertmaster for Maestro Jon Robertson.

Courses Taught at Redlands

  • Applied Violin
  • String Instrument Techniques

Degrees Held

  • B.M., Pacific Union College, 1984
  • M.M., University of Redlands, 1994

Previous Teaching Experience

  • Claremont Community School- String Orchestra Conductor, Violin Instructor, 2006-07
  • UofR School of Music Summer Workshop- Orchestra Conductor, 1993-1996
  • Redlands Bowl Summer Music Class – Introduciton to String Instruments, 1992

Previous Relevant Work Experience

  • Inland Valley Youth Symphony Music Director and Conductor, 2011-present
  • Rialto Unified School District String Festival Clinician, 2008-11
  • UofR CSMA String Ensembles and Youth Symphony Director and Conductor, 1993-present
  • Inland Empire Southern California Young Artist Symphony Orchestra Conductor, 1999
  • Redlands Unified School District – String Specialist, 1991-1995
  • University of Redlands Civic Orchestra Conductor, 1991-1994

Major awards

  • San Bernardino County Superintendent of Schools and San Bernardino County Music Educators Association – Outstanding High School Honor Orchestra Conductor Award, 2007
  • Who’s Who in Music 2006, 1978
  • Outstanding Instruction and Leadership Award – Youth Ensemble of Strings (YES), 1994, 2002, 2006
  • School of Music Director’s Award for Outstanding Service and Leadership to the UofR, School of Music, 1993
  • UofR, School of Music President’s Honor Recital Award, 1992

Significant Presentations

  • CSMA Youth Symphony Showcase Concerts – 2002 – Present
    Showcased outstanding soloist in the UofR School of Music/CSMA Programs
  • Identifying and preparing students for our UofR School of Music programs
  • Inland Valley Youth Symphony, Young Artist Concert

Professional Affiliations

  • Musicians Local 47- Professional Musicians Union
  • ASTA  

Additional Information

Karen Palmer received a Bachelor degree in Music Education from Pacific Union College and a Master of Music degree in Violin Performance from the University of Redlands.

Mrs. Palmer performed, as first violinist with Opera Pacific, San Bernardino Symphony Orchestra, Riverside County Philharmonic, and with the Neumark Ensemble. She has experienced great seasons and performances under Maestros Jon Robertson, John DeMain, John Williams, Dennis de Coteau, Leonard Bernstein, Leonard Slakin, David Romadonoff, Harold Farberman, and Stephen Tucker. In addition to her violin performance experiences, she is also an accomplished conductor, and has conducted and directed the University of Redlands School of Music Civic Orchestra, School of Music Summer Music Camp Orchestras and a Redlands Symphony Orchestra Rehearsal. Mrs. Palmer has served as first violinist with the University of Redlands School of Music Orchestra and as a Sectional Instructor.

Since 1993, Mrs. Palmer has been Director and Conductor of the Community School of Music and the Arts' Youth Ensemble of Strings (YES). In 1996 she founded the Virtuosi in Progress (VIP), and in 1999, the Youth Symphony Orchestra. In addition, she founded the CSMA Summer Workshops and for the past eleven years has Directed and Conducted the Youth Symphony Orchestra in the annual University of Redlands CSMA Summer Workshop for Youth Symphony, Chamber Orchestra, Band, Chamber Strings, Woodwinds, Brass, and Percussion held in July. Furthermore, Mrs. Palmer's appointment at the Claremont Community School of Music included Directing and Conducting two string ensembles (Prelude and Attacca) and violin instruction. This year she was invited by the San Bernardino County Music Educators Association to Guest Conduct the high school Honor Orchestra at the University of Redlands and was the Guest String Clinician for the Rialto USD String Festival, at the University of Redlands.

Currently, Mrs. Palmer is Artist Teacher of Violin and teaches String Instrument Techniques. She is also a tenured first violinist with the Redlands Symphony Orchestra and a member of the Pacific West String Quartet. Mrs. Palmer regularly appears in solo and School of Music faculty chamber music recitals, and has served as Concertmaster for the Redlands Symphony Orchestra.

How large is the main campus?
160 acres

The campus of the University of Redlands covers 160 acres.