PETER SEYMOUR





Peter Seymour  studied at Huddersfield School of Music and at University of York, including post-graduate work researching into the performance of baroque music. In July 1994 he was awarded the degree of D Mus., at University of York for research into performing style. He is director of Yorkshire Baroque Soloists and of Yorkshire Bach Choir
and has worked and recorded in most European countries. He is also an artistic adviser to York Early Music Festival and Senior Lecturer in Music and Organist at the University of York. He records regularly both as conductor and keyboard player for WDR-Köln, BBC and other radio stations.

Major recordings have included a three-year project recording the last six volumes of keyboard works by CPE Bach, the  JS Bach Motets, Haydn Seasons, a Viennese mass of 1648 plus related motets, and Festing's violin sonatas with Catherine Mackintosh. BBC 3 have broadcast many recordings of Lieder recitals (using fortepiano) with such as Emma Kirkby, Barbara Schlick, Stephen Varcoe and Mark Rowlinson, including live lunchtimes with Stephen Varcoe and Emma Kirkby with whom he also devised and performed two Invitation Concerts  exploring early dialogue and ornate Lieder. In the 1997 season he was again  involved in Lieder recitals with Emma Kirkby and Barbara Schlick, an Early Music University Network Tour,  performances of Schubert's Die schöne Müllerin and a BBC live lunchtime with Stephen Varcoe and  Winterreise with David Thomas. In the summer of 1999 he gave recitals with Emma Kirkby and  programmes of Goethe settings with Christoph Prégardien, Stephen Varcoe and Lynne Dawson. He also gives regular Lieder recitals with Yvonne Seymour, Ian Partridge, David Thomas and Thomas Thomaschke.

He conducts the WDR choir Corona Coloniensis, a specialist early music choir, with whom he has recorded programmes of Haydn, Mozart, motets of the Bach family, Cantiones sacrae by Sweelinck and madrigals by Peter Phillips. These are due for commercial release in the near future. In May 1995 the group recorded some 17th century motets from the German Baroque for both WDR and BBC and in 1998 and 2000 more motets by Sweelinck.

Recent recordings with Yorkshire Bach Choir and Yorkshire Baroque Soloists have included Handel's Alexander's Feast, Bach's Cantatas for the Feast of St Michael, Haydn's Theresienmesse and Mozart's Requiem, all of which were recently broadcast by BBC and WDR.  A recording of Mozart's Requiem for WDR has now been released on CD and a recording of Purcell's Dido & Aeneas is also awaiting commercial release. With Yorkshire Bach Choir and Yorkshire Baroque Soloists he conducted and helped to devise a programme for Channel 4 about Bach's work at Leipzig. Recordings of Bach's Motets and a Festal Mass at the Imperial Court in Vienna 1648  were re-issued in June/July 1997 on the Carlton IMP label.

Other major BBC recordings have included a sequence of Charpentier psalms, Purcell's semi-opera Dioclesian, Come ye Sons of Art, Yorkshire Feast Song, Clarke's Music on the Death of Purcell, and Blow's Welcome every guest. He has also directed recordings for BBC of string suites by Muffat and Biber with YBS and BBC have recently broadcast a Schubertiad and recordings of Lieder with Barbara Schlick as well as Biber's Missa Alleluia. BBC has also broadcast several recordings of concerts with Crispian Steele-Perkins. Recent WDR recordings have included a programme of solo harpsichord by JS Bach, Duphly and Arne and Italian cantatas by Handel.

He recently appeared at various festivals in England, USA, Denmark, Germany and the Czech Republic and conducted Northern Sinfonia in programmes of Beethoven, Mozart, Handel and Bach. In USA he has conducted and played  concertos with Virginia Symphony Orchestra and directed performances of Bach cantatas and played Bach harpsichord
concertos in Sacramento Bach Festival. He has also been conducting and playing in Corfu and Hong Kong where he  conducted Bach's Christmas Oratorio, St Matthew Passion, and a series of Bach cantatas, as well as performing solo harpsichord recitals and recording Bach's 5th Brandenburg Concerto.

In the last two seasons he has conducted Bach's Christmas Oratorio, St Matthew and St John Passions; Schütz's Christmas History; Handel's Israel in Egypt and Solomon; Monteverdi's Vespers; Haydn's Creation, Mozart's C Minor Mass, Linz Symphony and Exsultate jubilate (with Northern Sinfonia); and Mendelssohns' Elijah, Verdi's Quattro Pezzi Sacri, Puccini's Missa di Gloria and Elgar's Dream of Gerontius (with English Northern Philharmonia). He has also conducted, played harpsichord and gave masterclasses in Greece, Germany, the Czech Republic and in Denmark.

He has recently edited St Cecilia's Day Odes by Daniel Purcell (Begin and strike the harmonious lyre) and John Blow (Begin the Song) which he conducted in Autumn 1998. The Blow ode was also recorded as part of a live EBU broadcast from Köln in September 1999. In July 2000 he directed performances in York Early Music Festival, performing programmes of Schütz (St John Passion, Seven Last Words, Resurrection History) and some new editions of biblical narratives by Purcell and Blow. Both of these concerts were recorded by BBC. In the same month Yorkshire Baroque  oloists appeared in Ryedale Festival performing Purcell and Blow odes.

In the 2000/1 season he conducts Bachís B Minor Mass and Lutheran Masses, Handelís The ways of Zion do mourn, a programme for voices and strings by Haydn and Mozart and further English Restoration odes. He performs Bach F minor Harpsichord Concerto with Northern Sinfonia and also conducts them in Haydn's Schöpfungsmesse and Mozart Jupiter Symphony. With English Northern Philharmonia he conducts Berlioz' Te deum and Saint-Saëns Organ Symphony.

This page is maintained by Peter Seymour. Last updated October 2000.