Peter de Jager is Associate Accompanist for the Royal Melbourne Philharmonic, having played for both the RMP Choir as rehearsal accompanist, as a continuo player on both organ and harpsichord in various performances, and as an orchestral pianist with the Royal Melbourne Philharmonic Orchestra on tour in China. Peter holds a Bachelor of Music degree in Composition from the University of Melbourne. He undertook both the Young Academy program and the Advanced Performance program at the Australian National Academy of Music and is now on the faculty at ANAM as an Associate Artist. His piano teachers have included Stephen McIntyre, Rita Reichman and Nehama Patkin, his composition teachers Stuart Greenbaum and Elliott Gyger. He is equally a pianist, harpsichordist and composer, and works regularly as a collaborative pianist around Australia.
Widely regarded as one of Australia’s most exciting keyboard players, Peter’s repertoire is diverse, encompassing all periods of western classical music, which he often plays on period instruments, as well as musical theatre and cabaret. Performance highlights include the demanding solo Piano part of Messiaen’s Turangalila-Symphonie with the Melbourne Youth Orchestra in 2011, and his critically-acclaimed 2017 Melbourne Festival performance of all five major keyboard works of Iannis Xenakis.
Peter won the inaugural Australian International Chopin Competition in 2011, and in 2016 he was awarded second prize in the Australian National Piano Award, as well as Best Australian Competitor in the 2013 Southern Highlands International Piano Competition. In 2017 he was awarded ‘Performance of the Year’ at the Australian Music Centre’s Art Music Awards for the premiere of Chris Dench’s 100-minute Piano Sonata, which he commissioned. He has three times participated in the Lucerne Festival Academy, performing orchestral, chamber, and piano duo works by Pierre Boulez under the supervision of the composer.
In 2013 he recorded a critically acclaimed album of French Oboe Sonatas with Oboist Ben Opie. He co-wrote and continues to perform Reception: The Musical with Bethany Simons, which has been delighting Audiences Australia-wide, and was nominated for a Greenroom Award.
Peter’s compositions are starting to gain attention, having received commissions and performances from Astra, the Melbourne Chamber Orchestra, Speak Percussion, Syzygy, and Arcadia Winds.