Peter Dickinson

Peter Dickinson was born in Lytham St Annes, Lancashire, England, on 15 November 1934 and now lives in Suffolk. He went to Cambridge as Organ Scholar of Queens' College and then spent three formative years in New York, initially at the Juilliard School, then working as a critic and freelance performer. After a spell as a pianist at the New York City Ballet he became a Lecturer at Fairleigh Dickinson University, New Jersey. From this time onwards Dickinson's music has been regularly performed and recorded by some of the leading musicians and in 1988 the leading British TV arts programme, Melvyn Bragg's South Bank Show, made a one-hour documentary about him.

Many of Peter Dickinson's compositions are involved with popular music or jazz. His Piano Concerto, which contains a ragtime ensemble, made a strong impact at the BBC Proms in London and on CD (Albany TROY 360) with Howard Shelley as soloist, coupled with the earlier Organ Concerto, written for Simon Preston but recorded by Jennifer Bate. The subsequent Violin Concerto was a BBC commission in memory of the fine British violinist Ralph Holmes (1937-84).

Dickinson has been active as a pianist, notably in recitals, broadcasts and recordings through a twenty-five-year partnership with his sister, the mezzo Meriel Dickinson, who studied at the Royal Northern College in Manchester and with Hans Karg in Vienna. Her repertoire in opera ranged from Handel to Kurt Weill and Ivor Novello; the Dickinsons commissioned a number of British composers including Lennox Berkeley, Andrzej Panufnik, Gordon Crosse and Jonathan Harvey; and they became well-known at festivals and in broadcasts for presented recitals devoted to single composers such as Erik Satie, Charles Ives and Lord Berners as well as programmes based on settings of poets such as Auden, Joyce and E. E. Cummings. One of their most characteristic records is Rags, Blues and Parodies (Albany TROY 369) and Dickinson's literary interests are reflected in settings of poets such as Auden, E. E. Cummings, Dylan Thomas and John Heath-Stubbs (all on Albany TROY 365) as well as Emily Dickinson, Philip Larkin and Stevie Smith. Dickinson is heard as a pianist, along with Eric Parkin, on Albany TROY 760 which also includes the famous Swedish soprano Elisabeth Soderstrom in The Unicorns.

Peter Dickinson's writings include the first book on Sir Lennox Berkeley (Thames1989, enlarged 2nd ed. Boydell 2003); a study of the popular pianist-composer Billy Mayerl (OUP 1999); Copland Connotations: Studies and Interviews (Boydell 2002); CageTalk: Dialogues with and about John Cage (University of Rochester Press 2006); and Lord Berners: Composer Writer Painter (Boydell 2008). Dickinson has written chapters for various books, dictionaries and periodicals; for over thirty years he was a regular contributor to BBC Radio 3; and is a critic on the Gramophone

http://www.chesternovello.com/default.aspx?TabId=2431&State_2905=2&composerId_2905=366

Year / Artwork Title Importance Medium
1955-1956 Five Early Pieces for solo piano 4.00 stars CD
Avant Garde 1969 Comments:
Peter Dickinson - Piano
1955-1957 Metamorphoses for sole flute 4.00 stars CD
Avant Garde 1969 Comments:
Duke Dobing - Flute
1959 Air for Solo Flute 4.00 stars CD
Avant Garde 1969 Comments:
Duke Dobing - Flute
1963 Five Forgeries for piano duet 4.00 stars CD
Avant Garde 1969 Comments:
Peter Dickinson - Piano
1971 Organ Concerto 4.00 stars CD
Comments:
Jennifer Bate- Organ
BBC Symphony Orchestra cond. David Atherton
1979-1984 Piano Concerto 4.00 stars CD
Comments:
Howard Shelly - Piano
BBC Symphony Orchestra cond. David Atherton
1984 Mass of the Apocalypse 4.00 stars CD
Avant Garde 1969 Comments:
Lyricists
Peter Dickinson - Piano
1986 Violin Concerto 4.00 stars CD
Comments:
Chloe Hanslip - Violin
BBC  National Orchestra of Wales cond. Clark Rundell
1986 Merseyside Echoes 4.00 stars CD
Comments:
BBC  National Orchestra of Wales cond. Clark Rundell
1989 Larkin's Jazz 4.00 stars CD
Avant Garde 1969 Comments:
Philip Larkin - Lyrisist
Peter Dickinson - Piano
1963-2004 Rags, Blues and Parodies 4.00 stars CD
Comments:
A collection of jazzy compositions for piano (and singer)

Meriel Dickinson - Mezzo Soprano
Peter Dickinson - Piano