Biography Short biography

Peter Stark - conductor


Peter Stark’s work has taken him all over the world, but in particular to Europe where he has been hailed “genius... exemplary... one of the leading figures of a new generation of British Conductors”. He appears regularly at the Royal Festival Hall and the Barbican Centre, has recorded many times for BBC Radio 3 and has been the subject of a television documentary. He has performed at the Cheltenham International, Thaxted and St Albans Organ Festivals and CD recordings of his work include music by Britten, Elgar, Messiaen, Rachmaninov, Roxburgh, Shostakovich and Richard Strauss.

He trained in London at the Royal College of Music with Normal Del Mar and in Vienna with Sir Charles Mackerras. He was a finalist in the Vittorio Gui International Competition, a prize-winner in the Leeds Conductors’ Competition and was awarded the Tagore Gold Medal by the Royal College.

He has worked with many of the finest orchestras, including the London Symphony Orchestra, English Chamber Orchestra, Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, BBC National Orchestra of Wales and BBC Concert Orchestra. He has worked jointly with Pierre Boulez, Sir Colin Davis, Lord Menuhin, Sir Roger Norrington, Mstislav Rostropovich and Klaus Tennstedt, and has performed with soloists such as Peter Donohoe, Lynn Harrell, Stephen Isserlis, John Lill, Tasmin Little, Pascal Rogé and Raphael Wallfisch.

As an experienced trainer he is noted for inspiring young musicians; he is Leverhulme Professor of Conducting to the National Youth Orchestra and has conducted young orchestras ranging from the Hertfordshire County Youth Orchestra (Principal Conductor since 1994) to the New South Wales Public Schools' Symphony Orchestra, Australia. In 1997 he was appointed Senior Fellow of Conducting and Orchestral Studies by Trinity College of Music, London.

He is Artistic Director to both the West of England Philharmonic Orchestra and Parnassus (a fifteen piece instrumental ensemble specialising in festival based work performing anything from recitals to fully staged opera productions). In 2003 he was appointed Principal Conductor to the Cambridge University Chamber Orchestra.

A recording of Edwin Roxburgh’s “Saturn” was released in 2006 on the NMC label, and future plans include tours to the USA and his first appearance with the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra in 2007.

Numerous awards include the degree of Honorary Doctor of Music, awarded to him by the University of the West of England in 2000 for his “outstanding contribution to music in the West Country”.