Christopher Maunu is a conductor, educator, and professional singer based in the Denver-Metro area. Maunu is the Director of Choral Activities at Arvada West High School in Colorado. A passionate teacher, he was 1 of 10 Finalists for the 2018 Music Educator Award at the 60th GRAMMY® Awards. Maunu was also the recipient of the CMA® National Music Teacher of Excellence Award in 2019. Since starting his career at Arvada West in 2006, the department has nearly tripled in size and has become one of the premiere high school choir programs in the United States. Choirs under Maunu’s direction have performed at 12 national, regional, and state music conferences of ACDA and NAfME. Arvada West’s Vocal Showcase won the prestigious American Prize in Choral Performance and is the 9th American high school choir in history to receive the invitation to perform in the Champions Competition of the World Choir Games (Belgium 2020). Mr. Maunu received the Distinguished Alumni Award from Northern State University where he delivered the 2018 Commencement Address and was a recipient of a Commendation from the 71st House of Representatives for his work as a music educator.
Christopher has enjoyed serving as a clinician for all-state and honor choirs in numerous states, including a recent appointment to the faculty of Guest Artists at Manhattan Concert Productions (MCP) in New York City. An active member of NAfME, CMEA, and ACDA, Christopher currently serves as the High School Chair for Colorado ACDA and is a past member of the CMEA Vocal Music Council. Mr. Maunu is also co-founder and artistic director of Colorado’s Anima Chamber Ensemble, an elite 16-voice ensemble of choral professionals. New to the Rocky Mountain choral scene, Anima has enjoyed plenty of time on the classical music airwaves and packs the halls with enthusiastic concertgoers of all ages. Away from the podium, Maunu has sung professionally with various ensembles and opera companies, including the Santa Fe Desert Chorale, Central City Opera, and Opera Omaha.
Christopher holds a Master of Music degree in Vocal Performance from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and a Bachelor of Music Education from Northern State University in South Dakota. When not on the podium or singing in an ensemble, Christopher enjoys sharing his life with his wife Aleisha, son Bodhi, and pets, Paavo and Ligeti.