Luka Venter is a Wellington-based musician - conductor, composer, and vocalist - appointed Assistant Conductor of Orchestra Wellington across 2019 and 2020.

As a conductor, he was awarded a number of grants in 2018 from the New Zealand Opera Foundation Trust, Wallace Foundation, Lankhuyzen/Whetu-Kairangi Masonic Trust, and the Todd Trust which supported him travel to Florence, and London, and also to Berlin where he was a Visiting Scholar with the Mahler Chamber Orchestra under Sir George Benjamin. While in Berlin and London, he also shadowed conductors including Simone Young, Matthias Pintscher, François-Xavier Roth, Sir Simon Rattle, and Esa-Pekka Salonen and Sir Antonio Pappano in rehearsals with the Staatsoper Unter den Linden, Ensemble Intercontemporain, the Berliner Philharmoniker, London Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonia Orchestra, and the Royal Opera House Covent Garden. While in Europe, he was also an auditor at the Florence Conducting Masterclass under Günter Neuhold.

He trained as a vocalist, composer, and conductor at Te Kōkī - the New Zealand School of Music - working in particular with Margaret Medlyn, Michael Norris, and Hamish McKeich. He has also undertaken postgraduate studies in historical performance practice. As a composer, he was the recipient of the 2018 NZSO Todd Corporation Young Composer Award, for which he has twice been a finalist, while on the other end of the spectrum, he privately trains as a viola da gamba player with Robert Oliver. He harbours an intense interest in languages, linguistics, and creative writing, and continues to sing as a longstanding member of the Freemasons NZ Opera Chorus.


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