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Peter Harvey

  • Baritone

Concerts: St. Matthew Passion, St. John PassionHercules

Peter Harvey arrived at Magdalen College, Oxford to study French and German, and though he soon afterwards changed course to music, his love of languages has always remained at the heart of his singing. He went on to study at the Guildhall School of Music London, where he won prizes in a number of international singing competitions, including the Walther Grüner International Lieder Competition, English Song Award, and Peter Pears Award. He has made well over a hundred recordings in repertoire spanning eight centuries, with an emphasis on music from the High Baroque.

With the English Baroque Soloists and the Monteverdi Choir, directed by Sir John Eliot Gardiner, he was a key participant in the Bach Cantata Pilgrimage, recordings of which include the celebrated solo cantata Ich habe genug. More recently he sang Christus St John Passion with them at the BBC Proms. A long-standing soloist with Paul McCreesh's Gabrieli Consort, he sang Adam in their recording of Haydn The Creation (winner of a 'Grammy' Award) and has appeared in their recordings of St Matthew Passion, Solomon and the Monteverdi Vespers (Deutsche Grammophon) as well as numerous concerts at major concert halls worldwide. Other groups he regularly performs and records with include The King’s Consort, Purcell Quartet with Emma Kirkby (early Bach for Chandos) and London Baroque (Rameau for BIS), as well as appearances with The Sixteen, Retrospect Ensemble, Purcell Singers, Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, BBC National Orchestra of Wales BBC Symphony Orchestra, Royal Scottish National Orchestra and Academy of Ancient Music.

A fluent French speaker, he works and records with the Chapelle Royale and Collegium Vocale Ghent (Philippe Herreweghe), Les Talens Lyriques (Christophe Rousset), Le Concert Spirituel (Hervé Niquet), Arsys Bourgogne, Ensemble Vocal Lausanne and Jean-Claude Malgoire.

His long association with the conductor Michel Corboz, has taken him throughout France, Switzerland and Japan and produced various recordings, including two versions of the Fauré Requiem, the latest of which won a Choc de l'année. In Japan he also performed with Masaaki Suzuki.

For the Netherlands Bach Society he has recorded Mozart Requiem, Bach Christmas Oratorio and B minor Mass. With Ton Koopman he has performed Bach in the Musikverein Vienna, Théâtre des Champs Elysées Paris, in Verona and Rome. In Germany he sings with Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra, La Stagione Frankfurt, Akademie fur Alte Musik Berlin, Bach Akademie Stuttgart, and with Frieder Bernius' Stuttgart Chamber Choir.

His return to the Song repertoire has taken him to European festivals, performing Schubert's Winterreise with Roger Vignoles; he also recorded it with fortepianist Gary Cooper for Linn Records, as well as Beethoven settings of Scottish folksongs with Jérôme Hantaï's fortepiano trio for Naïve.

Recent releases include Bach’s St Matthew Passion with the York Baroque Soloists (Signum) and Kammerchor Stuttgart (Carus), Mass in B minor with Concerto Copenhagen (CPO), Handel’s Israel in Egypt with Le concert Lorrain (Etcetera) and L'Allegro, il Penseroso ed il Moderato with the Gabrieli Consort (Signum), a work which he performed on tour last season with Bach-Stiftung St. Gallen, and a disc “Bach Cantatas: Recreation for the Soul”, with the Magdalena Consort, which Peter founded and directs and which focuses on the vocal music of J.S. Bach. They have given concerts in Spain, Germany and in the UK at the Cheltenham Festival.

Peter has recently added the operatic roles of Sprecher Die Zauberflöte (Budapest Festival Orchestra under Iván Fischer) and Papageno (Carmel Bach Festival with Paul Goodwin) to his repertoire, and is opening the 2016/17 season with Purcell’s Fairy Queen at Royal Danish Opera. Further current collaborations include the Oslo Philharmonic, Munich Radio Choir, Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, Wroclaw Baroque, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Sinfonieorchester Basel, Concertgebouw Orkest, Gulbenkian Orchestra, Israel Camerata, and, in North America, Tafelmusik Baroque and The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra. 

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