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Peter Hill (b1948)

Hill read music at Oxford gaining a Master of Arts degree, during which time he studied piano with Cyril Smith. He then continued his piano studies at the Royal College of Music with Cyril Smith, gaining the Chappell Gold Medal. Whilst at the Royal College of Music he also studied with Nadia Boulanger in Paris, who described him as ‘…a born artist, a beautiful natural talent’. Hill has always been interested in contemporary music. He has said, ‘The turning point of my life came when I was about fourteen, when I discovered “real” twentieth-century music, via Schoenberg’s piano music which I came across in a shop in Winchester… What I discovered was that just playing a major seventh softly was extraordinarily beautiful and I played those pieces with a kind of missionary zeal.’ He was awarded a first prize at the International Centre for New Music in Darmstadt for his playing of Cage and Stockhausen, and was a founder member (with Douglas Young, Kathryn Lukas and Rohan de Saram) of Dreamtiger, the ensemble devoted to organising concerts of contemporary music. Hill has appeared at many international music festivals including Bath, Harrogate and Stuttgart, and since 1976 has broadcast regularly for the BBC making nearly one hundred programmes; these include the recording of the complete piano music of Schoenberg and the complete solo piano music of Messiaen. In 1992 Hill took a research fellowship at Royal Holloway College on Xenakis, but was not inspired by this composer. He has given many first performances by




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