A concert cellist, teacher, music historian, publisher and author, Nona Pyron pursued undergraduate studies at the Eastman School of Music, and holds Masters and Doctoral degrees from the University of Southern California.
Midway through her Masters degree at USC she attended the Staatliche Hochschule für Music in Munich, Germany, under the auspices of a Fulbright Scholarship and German Government Study Grant.
Upon completion of her Masters degree, she joined the faculty of Willamette University in Salem, Oregon, and simultaneously played three seasons with the Portland Symphony. For three summers she participated with other members of the Portland Symphony in the Alaska Music Festival under Robert Shaw and toured Alaska with the Willamette Faculty Trio. While at Willamette, she was among eight cellists selected nationally to play for Pablo Casals in his Master Classes in Berkeley, California. She also received a Danforth Foundation Grant to complete her doctorate at USC. After nine years at Willamette University, she resigned her position there and returned to Europe to embark upon a period of intensive research into the early history of the cello.
This research led to the discovery and collection of over 8,000 previously unknown Baroque and Classical works for the cello. Many years went into the amassing of this collection, arguably the largest single collection of cello music of this period, and many more years were spent absorbing the insights gained from this music into her own performance and teaching. Through a series of six concerts at the Wigmore Hall in London, she became the first cellist to combine performance of Baroque and Classical music on period instruments with the standard 19th and 20th century repertoire on the “modern” cello in a single concert.
Living in London from 1971 to 1988 she studied privately with the legendary cellist and teacher, William Pleeth, and collaborated with him on the book, “Cello”, for the Yehudi Menuhin Series. In addition to capturing the thoughts and wisdom of this extraordinary teacher, the book also contains her own 65 page “Introduction to the Early History of the Cello” which summarizes her many years of research on the early history of the cello.
Her concerts in London, and throughout England and Europe, led to a demand for access to her collection of early masterpieces by her performing colleagues. This, in turn, led to the eventual founding of Grancino Editions, a music publishing house dedicated to the publication of forgotten music from the 17th and 18th centuries.
In 1988 Nona returned to her native California and began teaching, performing and conducting master classes. In 2006 she joined the Music Faculty of Westmont College in Santa Barbara, California, and taught there until 2011. She continues to live in Santa Barbara where she oversees the publications of Grancino Editions and devotes her time to teaching and performance.
Nona is listed in Who’s Who in America.