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Peter Mathews was born in 1944 in Vancouver, British Columbia and studied violin and piano under the Toronto Conservatory system. He received a Licentiate Diploma in Piano Performance at the Royal Academy of Music, London, and an undergraduate music degree at Andrews University in Michigan. His graduate studies have included both a Master of Music and Doctor of Musical Arts in conducting from the University of Missouri at Kansas City where he worked with Eph Ehly.
Since 1994 as a founding member and Artistic Director of the Central Florida choral ensemble, Orlando XIII, his combined talents as composer, conductor, and singer have proved to be invaluable to "one of the most exciting music groups in Central Florida" (The Arts Connection, WMFE-FM). In 1997 Orlando XIII included a premiere of the Mathews motet, A Prayer, as a part of their first appearance on the Choral Artists' Series of the Piccolo Spoleto Festival held annually in Charleston, South Carolina. The Charleston Post and Courier declared the debut "spectacular" and the ensemble has now appeared at the Festival for four consecutive years. From 1984 to 1997 Dr. Mathews was the conductor of The Orlando Singers (first established as the Florida Hospital Chorus) which developed a significant choral reputation in Central Florida. He also conducts church choirs, teaches piano, and has served as composer-in-residence to several churches while serving as a staff singer. In 1998-99 the Music Department of Stetson University requested Dr. Mathews' assistance and expertise as a faculty member in the areas of theory and ear training. Since 1999 he has served as Choirmaster for St. Barnabas Episcopal Church in DeLand, Florida.
Increasingly in demand as a conductor and workshop clinician, Dr. Mathews and his work were represented at the 1993 Southeast Regional Convention of the American Guild of Organists. The 1994 Episcopal Diocese of Central Florida Choir Festival also featured the composer in this dual capacity. In 1999 Dr. Mathews was awarded the anthem commission for the 49th Annual Sewanee Church Music Conference, long recognized for excellence by the Episcopal Church Standing Commission on Church Music. In January 2000 he conducted two commissioned choral premieres at St. Paul's Episcopal Church, Augusta, Georgia as part of their 250th anniversary celebration.
Commissioned works of Peter Mathews continue to gain exposure through live performance and compact disc projects for the choirs of Edith Ho (Church of the Advent, Boston) and Anton Armstrong (St. Olaf College). The 1994 Florida All-State High School Chorus, Boston's Youth Pro Musica, DePauw University, St. Olaf College, and Stetson University have included works of Peter Mathews in their choirs' concerts and tours. His liturgical music was featured in June 2000 at the Regional Convention of the National Association of Pastoral Musicians held in Orlando, Florida.
Dr. Mathews has written over 160 compositions of which over 75 are published by Alliance, Choristers Guild, H.W. Gray, Kjos, Lawson-Gould, Lorenz, MorningStar, St. James Press, and Southern. While composing music for worship, his commissions also have included art songs and chamber music with voice and instruments in varying combinations
More information about Dr. Mathews can be found at his website: www.petermathews.net
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