Peter Nilsson
Head of Music

Born in Chicago, Peter Nilsson attended the University of Illinois, where he studied accompanying under John Wustman and voice under Dodi Protero and Mark Elyn. Peter Nilsson began as repetiteur with the Illinois Opera Center and Bowen Park Opera, and later worked at the Lyric Opera Center for Young American Artists and as accompanist for the Chicago Symphony Chorus, where he worked under Daniel Barenboim, Pierre Boulez, James Conlon, James Levine, Leonard Slatkin and Sir Georg Solti. As repetiteur for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra he worked with, among others, Dale Duesing, Susan Graham, Susan Dunn, Marquita Lister, Anthony Rolfe Johnson, John Tomlinson, and Tatiana Troyanos.

In 1992 Peter Nilsson moved to Holland, where he is Head of Musical Studies at the Dutch National Opera Academy (Den Haag/Amsterdam) and is a regular guest with the Broadcast Choir and at the Netherlands Opera, where he has worked closely with such conductors as Yves Abel, Marc Albrecht, Daniele Callegari, Paolo Carignani, Riccardo Frizza, Hartmut Haenchen, Ingo Metzmacher, Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Julian Reynolds, Carlo Rizzi and Mark Wigglesworth. Peter Nilsson is also active as accompanist for vocal masterclasses, having participated in classes from, among others, Roberta Alexander, Elly Ameling, Diane Forlano, Hartmut Haenchen, Jard van Nes, Anthony Rolfe Johnson, Charlotte Margiono, Nelly Miricioiu, Barbara Pearson, and both series of Masterclasses given by Dame Joan Sutherland and Richard Bonynge at the Britten–Pears School in Aldeburgh.  

In Chicago he made regular appearances in the Dame Myra Hess recital series. He has appeared in the UK (St. John’s Smith Square, London among other venues), Belgium, Germany, and in the Netherlands, where he performs regularly with Charlotte Margiono. He was the pianist in Opera C&F’s highly praised productions of Janáček’s Diary of one who vanished (2003), and Phaedra & Cleopatra: 2 vrouwen (2005).

He has appeared in all of the Netherlands’ major halls: both the Kleine Zaal and the Grote Zaal of Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw, Muziekcentrum Vredenburg in Utrecht, and the Doelen in Rotterdam, all with Charlotte Margiono. In June 2007 these two artists, together with violist Esther van Stralen, were guests of the first Festival Classique in Den Haag. In December 2011 he appeared, again with Charlotte Margiono, in the series Great Singers in Amsterdam’s Muziekgebouw aan het IJ. In September of 2010 he was heard with Alejandro Marco-Buhrmester in the Grote Zaal of the Concertgebouw, in September 2011 in the Kleine Zaal with Simone Riksman and Jean-François Lapointe. He appeared with Olga Peretyatko in April 2012 on the main stage of the Muziektheater in Amsterdam, and subsequently at the Edison Classics Gala in June of that year. In the 2013–14 season he was heard with Maria Riccarda Wesseling (Venice, Leipzig Gewandhaus, Zürich Tonhalle, Festival Printemps des Arts de Monte-Carlo) and Julia Westendorp (Davos and Lucerne Festivals). In November 2014 mezzo-soprano Maria Fiselier and Peter Nilsson released an album of English songs by Ivor Gurney, Herbert Howells, and Benjamin Britten as part of the launch of the 7 Mountains Records label.