PETER STAFFORD WILSON is one of the most exciting and talked about conductors of his generation being versatile in the areas of symphonic, ballet, and education. He has served the Springfield Symphony Orchestra as Music Director since 2001, and oncurrently, he holds the post of Music Director of the Westerville Symphony, and was named Principal Conductor of Tulsa Ballet in 2012. Peter Stafford Wilson’s leadership of the Springfield Symphony Orchestra continues to elicit praise from the public, musicians and press. Its 2005 Agriculture and the Arts Growing Together brought international attention to the organization, as did the sequel, American Made: Celebrating Our Manufacturing Heritage, which premiered in November 2007. A new multi-media, multi discipline production of Gustav Holst’s The Planets in 2011 resulted in a sellout house, while the orchestra’s innovative series, “Night Lights,” has enjoyed steadily increasing sales and attendance. The recent endowment of the Music Director chair with gifts totaling over one million dollars is further testimony to the community’s enthusiastic support. Mr. Wilson and the SSO are the recipients of a 2009-2010 ASCAP Award for Adventurous Programming as offered by the League of American Orchestras. Since 1990, Peter Stafford Wilson has held the posts of Assistant and Associate Conductor of The Columbus Symphony Orchestra, a tenure he concluded in 2018 after 28 seasons.
Since 1993, Wilson has served the Westerville Symphony at Otterbein University, a unique community of student musicians, gifted amateurs, and freelance professional musicians.
Appointed Principal Conductor of the Tulsa Ballet in 2012, Wilson leads the Tulsa Symphony in four productions a season for this outstanding regional company.
Wilson was appointed Music Director of the Springfield Symphony Orchestra in 2001 and has led the Orchestra to national prominence including receipt of an ASCAP LAO Award for Adventurous Programming.
Giselle, with its academic score by ballet composer Adolphe Adam, admirably conducted with balance and flair by Peter Stafford Wilson. (Pennsylvania Ballet)
The orchestra was outstanding the whole evening. Tempi seemed perfect for every dancer and the ensemble. There were no lengthy pauses between sections that have tended to kill the momentum in other productions. The conductor, Peter Stafford Wilson, was making his debut with Pennsylvania Ballet.
Tulsa Ballet’s extraordinary ’Tchaikovsky: The Man Behind the Music,’ which had its world-premiere performance at the Tulsa PAC is, simply, a triumph. The ballet’s score was assembled by [choreographer] Ma Cong and composer-librettist Oliver Peter Graber from familiar and lesser-known pieces by Tchaikovsky, augmented by Graber’s own compositions and selections from some of Tchaikovsky’s contemporaries. The result was a remarkably seamless, highly dramatic whole, which the Tulsa Symphony, under the direction of Peter Stafford Wilson, performed about as well as one could hope. It was a highly colored, well-paced performance that packed as much of an emotional punch as the dancing.
Pennsylvania Ballet’s Giselle stands as testimony to why the company has never been better than it is right now. Seen by an audience that packed the historic Academy of Music, Giselle received a stunning rendition. Conductor Peter Stafford Wilson and the PA Ballet Orchestra gave Adolphe Adams’ sentimental score a luscious reading.
The Tulsa Symphony Orchestra, under the direction of Peter Stafford Wilson, gave a robust performance of the Tchaikovsky score [The Nutcracker], full of drama, character and color, and which earned them an ovation that rivaled the one given to the dancers.
Under Peter Stafford Wilson’s sensitive baton, the Tulsa Symphony Orchestra’s performance (of Cranko/Tchaikovsky/Stolze Onegin) was richly colored, cohesvive, and perfectly paced
Friday’s performance was about as good as one could imagine. Conductor Peter Stafford Wilson led the Tulsa Symphony in a performance of the Prokofiev score that was beautifully paced and highlighted the often thorny harmonies and dark accents that decorate the lush melodies.
Tulsa Ballet certainly has the talent and the work ethic necssary to do this ballet, as it showed at Friday’s opening night performance. Music director Peter Stafford Wilson conducted the Tulsa Symphony Orchestra, which gave a performance of the score full of effervescence and vitality. Wi’lson’s pacing was excellent, and he guided the players in phrasing that perfectly underscored the action and emotion of the scene
Mozart – and the Columbus Symphony Orchestra – were in superb form for this year’s Mozart Festival. Each phrase had direction, each section offered energy and drive. This was a polished reading that could be used as a model for near-perfection in Mozartean performance. Central Ohio lovers of Mozart are fortunate, indeed
Cherish the Ladies’ collaboration with the Syracuse Symphony Orchestra was a successful one, thanks to the vigor and skill of the ensemble, as well as the energy imparted by guest conductor Peter Stafford Wilson
This weekend’s Columbus Symphony Orchestra concerts demonstrate why orchestras have assistant conductors. Last night’s performance demonstrated why the CSO is fortunate to have a good one. Happily, Peter Stafford Wilson looked anything but the last-minute replacement . It was immediately clear that he was prepared, and prepared to make good music, which is just what happened
Joined by 84 members of the Springfield Symphony Chorale and four vocal soloists, a spectacular, well-balanced performance of Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass in D minor ensued. Maestro Wilson displayed exceptional leadership as he pulled every ounce of musicianship from the combined ensembles. This evening proved once again that community spirit can indeed result in great musical collaboration. Bravo Springfield
The Columbus Symphony is back, under the experienced leadership of conductor Peter Stafford Wilson. Thank goodness. This ballet was considered as a partnership between music and dance, and that’s what it was. Tempos seemed well-thought-out in each scene, and contrasting dynamics and spotlighted solos helped bring Tchaikovsky’s fabled score to life.
- Graduated from University of Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music
- Studied with Thomas Schippers, Louis Lane, Dennis Russell Davies, Gerhard Samuel, Sheldon Morgenstern
- Studied at the Aspen Music School, the Monteux School, and the Goldovsky Summer Opera Institute
- Invited by Claudio Abbado to follow rehearsals and performances at Teatro alla Scala in Milan, The Edinburgh Festival, the Vienna Philharmonic, and the Berlin Philharmonic
Previous Professional Positions
- Assistant and Associate Conductor of the Columbus Symphony
- Assistant and Associate Conductor of the Canton Symphony
- Regional Pops Conductor for the Cincinnati Symphony
- Cover Conductor for the Cleveland Orchestra
- Principal Conductor for BalletMet Columbus
- Music Director of the Ohio Light Opera
- Regular Guest Conductor of the College Light Opera
- Music Director of the Young Artists Opera Theater
- Music Director of the Lakeland Civic Orchestra
- Music Director of the Kent State University Sinfonia
- Interim Conductor of the Cedarville University Orchestra
- George Hardesty Award for Oustanding Leadership from the Columbus Symphony Orchestra
- Greater Columbus Arts Council Educator of the Year Award
- Best Music Director 2015 Best of the Bus Awards City Scene Magazine
- ASCAP/League of American Orchestras Award for Adventurous Programming
- Columbus Symphony Orchestra Educator of the Year Award
- City of Westerville Year of the Arts Honoree
- Columbus Dispatch Best Classical Music/Dance Events of the Year (Multiple years)
- League of American Orchestras National Conductor Preview
- Phi Delta Kappa Lay Community Service Award for educational activities
- Northern Ohio Live magazine "New Leader" - introduced by regional magazine as "one of northern Ohio's men and women under forty who are changing the region with their fliar, energy, and creativity."
Recent Guest Conducting
- Canton Civic Opera
- Canton Symphony
- Napa Valley Symphony
- North Carolina Symphony
- Youngstown Symphony
- San Antonio Symphony
- Roanoke (VA) Symphony
- Roanoke (VA) Symphony
- Erie Philharmonic
- Syracuse Symphony
- Dallas Symphony
- Northeastern Pennsylvania Philharmonic
- Tulsa Philharmonic
- Detroit Symphony
- The Louisville Orchestra
- Indianapolis Symphony
- Kansas City Symphony
- Cincinnati Symphony
- Phoenix Symphony
- Peter Nero's Philly Pops
- Chautauqua Symphony
- Shenzhen (China) Symphony Orchestra
- Orquesta Filarmonica de Montevideo
- Michigan Opera Theater Orchestra
- Opera Columbus
- Seattle Symphony
- City of Westerville Year of the Arts Honoree
- Otterbein Opera Theater
- West Virginia Symphony
- Hong Kong Sinfonietta
- Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra