Russell Peck's orchestral
compositions have received thousands of performances by hundreds of
orchestras in the United States, Canada, Europe, Asia, Latin America,
and Africa. These include the major American orchestras of Boston,
Pittsburgh, Atlanta, Milwaukee, etc., Britain's London Symphony and
Royal Philharmonic, and orchestral performances at Lincoln Center
and Kennedy Center, and in Berlin, Warsaw, Barcelona, Kiev, Montreal,
Hong Kong, Singapore, Cairo, Caracas, and other world cities.
An Albany Records compact
disk of four of the composer's orchestral works (TROY 040) features
recordings by the London Symphony. Other recordings are on Koch International
and Channel Crossings (Netherlands). His Peace Overture was among
the first serious contemporary American orchestral works played in
the People's Republic of China (Shanghai Symphony), and one of the
very few to be played in Africa (Cairo Symphony).
In 2000-2001 a consortium
of 39 American orchestras commissioned Mr. Peck's Timpani Concerto
Harmonic Rhythm. The premiere performances began with the Louisville
Orchestra and proceeded with orchestras throughout the United States,
including the Detroit Symphony Orchestra and the Rochester Philharmonic
Other best known works
by Mr. Peck include his triple percussion concerto, The Glory and
the Grandeur; Signs of Life II for string orchestra; and The Thrill
of the Orchestra, a narrated orchestral instrument demonstration piece
which was recorded for the Discovery series by the Royal Philharmonic
Orchestra of London, and has been translated into French, German,
Spanish, Hebrew, Portuguese, Japanese, Korean and Cantonese.
Among his best known works
for winds and percussion: Lift-Off percussion trio; Drastic Measures
saxophone quartet; Cave for wind ensemble; The Glory and the Grandeur
concerto for percussion trio and orchestra or wind symphony; The Upward
Stream concerto for tenor saxophone and orchestra or symphonic band.
Mr. Peck also performed
extensively as narrator of his own orchestral works for young (and
adult) audiences, and appeared as guest artist with orchestras throughout
the United States.
Russell Peck's music is
licensed through ASCAP and is published by Pecktackular Music, E.B.
Marks, Carl Fischer, Editions Jobert and others. Recordings of his
music are available on Albany, Koch International, Channel Crossings,
and C.R.I. labels.
Among the honors Mr. Peck
received are the Koussevitsky Prize, two Ford Foundation Fellowships,
grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and several states'
arts councils, ASCAP awards, and commissions from major symphony orchestras.
Artist residencies included the Gaudeamus Contemporary Music Festival
in the Netherlands and a two year appointment as composer-in-residence
for the city of Indianapolis and the Indianapolis Symphony. Mr. Peck
also served on the faculty of Northern Illinois University, Eastman
School of Music, and the North Carolina School of the Arts.
Russell Peck (born
Detroit, Michigan USA, 1945; died Greensboro, North Carolina USA,
2009) was an honors graduate of the University of Michigan (1966),
where he also received Master and Doctoral degrees in composition
(1967 and 1972). His composition teachers included Clark Eastham,
Leslie Bassett, Ross Lee Finney, Gunther Schuller, and George Rochberg
- the latter two through Margaret Crofts Fellowships at Tanglewood