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Peter Barber

Performer, Commissioner


Peter Barber performs in the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra as Assistant sub-principal violist. In addition he teaches the viola privately, and performs as a chamber musician. He was born in Lower Hutt in 1957 and currently resides in Lyall Bay.

Peter learnt from Zillah Castle, before becoming a member of the NZSO Schola Musica, studying with NZSO Principal Viola Emeritus, Vyvyan Yendoll. He is also a graduate of the Cologne Music Academy, where his course of study included tuition from professor of viola, Rainer Moog and members of the Amadeus String Quartet.

Over the years Peter has played in the NZSO Chamber Orchestra, New Zealand String Quartet, the New Zealand Soloists, Nevine String Quartet and the Amazon Trio. He also works regularly with his sister, concert accompanist Mary Barber, and is a viola tutor at the New Zealand Music School. Peter plays a viola made in the early ’70’s by Otto Erdesz.

His New Zealand repertoire includes Douglas Lilburn's "Salutes to Seven Poets" for viola and piano. As a solo violist he has performed the following NZ works, Matthew Davidson's "Magyar Rondo", John Rimmer’s “Mahurangi”, John Elmsly’s “Stillscape” & "Four Echoes", and David Farquhar’s “Chap-chap”.

A recording of Peter accompanying Roger Wilson in “Three Songs for Baritone and Viola” by Douglas Lilburn (to a texts by James K. Baxter) has been included on The Waiteata Collection of New Zealand Music Volume IX: Douglas Lilburn: Salutes to Poets.

Peter was involved in SOUNZ's ReSound project, recording Chris Blake's "A Viola on Skye", and with Rachel Vernon clarinetist and Andrew Joyce cellist recording Chloe Moon's "Trio for clarinet, viola and cello".

Peter also enjoys choral singing and has sung in Cantoris, Bel Canto and Nota Bene.

Commissioned (1)

Four Echoes

for viola