Donald Palma has an active career as double bassist, conductor, and educator. A native New Yorker, Don attended the Juilliard School and at the age of nineteenjoined Leopold Stokowski’s American Symphony Orchestra. As a member of the
newly formed contemporary music ensemble, Speculum Musicae, he went on to win the Naumburg Competition and secure management with Young Concert Artists. A founding member of the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, Don has toured the globe and recorded over fifty compact discs for Deutsche Grammophone, including the
Grammy Award winning Stravinsky CD, Shadow Dances. Don has also been a member of the Los Angeles Philharmonic and played Principal Bass in the National Arts Centre Orchestra under Trevor Pinnock. He played principal bass for Leonard
Bernstein on his recording of West Side Story and was a featured artist on Kathleen Battle’s recording, Grace. As a performer devoted to contemporary music, he has played and conducted dozens of premieres and recordings of important works.
Elliott Carter’s Figment III, Mario Davidovsky’s Synchronism No. 11, and Charles Wuorinen’s Spin-Off are among the many works composed for him. He has conducted three critically acclaimed CDs of American music with the Odense Symphony in Denmark. Don has conducted the Xalapa Symphony, the Bridgeport Symphony, at the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center and at the Teatro
Colon in Buenos Aires. He recorded Stravinsky’s L’histoire du soldat with Rogers Waters narrating which was released by SONY in 2018. Don also appears with Orpheus on Wayne Shorter’s Emanon, which won a 2018 Grammy. He frequently performs with Mistral, at the Bridgehampton Chamber Music Festival, the White Mountains Festival and is Music Director of the Symphony-by the-Sea in Beverly,
MA. Don is on the faculties of the Yale School of Music and the New England Conservatory where he is Artistic Director of the NEC Chamber Orchestra.