Next up in our 2010 Repertoire Report listings is one of the top youth orchestra conductors in the United States, Troy Peters. Troy brought the Vermont Youth Orchestra to national acclaim during his tenure there, and has had his ensembles play alongside leading rock bands and work with eminent composers. A world-premiere by Daron Hagen leaps off the page, as does Haydn 84- I always think young players need to do more classical repertoire than they do (often conductors are afraid to program it because it doesn’t keep the brass and percussion very busy, and because it takes way more maturity than Rachmaninov and Shostakovich). He also conducted one of his own works, something we should all make ourselves do more often, whether we’re “real” composers like Troy, or compose to keep ourselves closer to understanding how “real” composers work. Thanks to Troy’ and his tireless team of personal archivists for assembling his list
Troy Peters became Music Director of the Youth Orchestras of San Antonio in August 2009, after 14 years in Vermont, where he was Music Director of the Vermont Youth Orchestra, the Middlebury College Orchestra, and the Montpelier Chamber Orchestra. His work has been the subject of national media attention from CBS Sunday Morning, National Public Radio’s Weekend Edition, and The New Yorker. Vermont Governor James Douglas recognized his contribution to the state’s cultural life by proclaiming April 17, 2005, as “Troy Peters Day” in Vermont, and he was also awarded a Vermont Arts Council Citation of Merit in 2009. He has gained international attention for his orchestral collaborations with rock guitarist and composer Trey Anastasio (of the band Phish), including numerous live performances and two albums on Elektra Records.
Peters has been a frequent and popular guest conductor with many groups, including the San Antonio Symphony, Vermont Symphony Orchestra, Vermont Mozart Festival, and Northwest Mahler Festival. He conducted the world premiere recording of Daron Hagen’s Masqueradewith violinist Jaime Laredo, cellist Sharon Robinson, and the Vermont Symphony Orchestra. Among the other soloists with whom he has collaborated are Midori, Horacio Gutiérrez, Daniel Bernard Roumain (DBR), and Soovin Kim. He has been honored with seven ASCAP Awards for Adventurous Programming of Contemporary Music. Among Peters’ other past conducting positions are posts with the Philadelphia Youth Orchestra, the Pacific Chamber Soloists, and Perpetuum Mobile. He holds degrees from the Curtis Institute of Music and the University of Pennsylvania.
Peters is also active as a composer, where his work ranges from orchestral and chamber music to a large body of songs and an opera for hand puppets. Among his honors are the Charles Ives Scholarship from the American Academy of Arts and Letters and grants from Meet the Composer and the Rockefeller Foundation. His music has been commissioned by many groups, including the Philadelphia Singers, Vermont Symphony Orchestra, Saint Michael’s College, Vermont Contemporary Music Ensemble, and Social Band. His primary compositional mentors were Ned Rorem and George Crumb. A versatile instrumentalist, Peters not only plays the viola, but has also performed on tenor banjo and electric guitar with symphony orchestras. Born in 1969 in Greenock, Scotland, of American parents, he lives in San Antonio with his wife and two children.
2010 Repertoire Report