Faculty & Staff

Dr. Peter Wilson


Adjunct Applied Faculty

  • Violin


  • B.M., Northwestern University
  • M.M., The Catholic University of America
  • D.M.A., The Catholic University of America

Peter Wilson is an engaging and multifaceted American violinist and conductor whose musicianship has been noted as “first-class” by The Washington Post. He currently serves as Music Director of the Richmond Philharmonic Orchestra and the Waynesboro Symphony Orchestra. He has also guest conducted the National Symphony Orchestra as well as the National Gallery Orchestra. In addition, he has served as Music Director of the Youth Orchestras of Fairfax (TYOF) from 2010-2013.

Dr. Wilson presently serves as Concertmaster of the American Festival Pops Orchestra, conducted by Professor Anthony Maiello. He also is a member of the President’s Own United States Marine Band in Washington, D.C., serving as violinist of The White House and String Section Commander. An active chamber musician, concertmaster, recording artist, and performance clinician throughout the United States, he holds music degrees from Northwestern University and The Catholic University of America where he earned a Doctor of Musical Arts.

Dr. Wilson began his professional career as Concertmaster of the Walt Disney World Orchestra. He is in great demand for his skills and versatility, commanding respect in genres ranging from classical and jazz to country, folk, and pop/rock. He has appeared as a violin soloist with such renowned artists as Rosemary Clooney, Michael Feinstein, Renée Fleming, Bernadette Peters, Randy Travis, Chely Wright, and Trisha Yearwood.  He has performed chamber music in concert with Ida Kavafian, Steven Tenenbom, and Peter Wiley. In 2001, he soloed at the personal invitation of former Defense Secretary William Cohen for a private book-signing event honoring Quincy Jones and the release of his autobiography “Q.”  In addition, he has soloed in many unique venues including the Presidential Retreat at Camp David, the Vatican before Pope John Paul II, the American Embassy in Paris, and Chicago’s Comiskey Park, where he performed his arrangement of The Star-Spangled Banner to open a Major League Baseball game. He also performed the arrangement to kick off the 2009 Leukemia Ball in Washington, DC. As a studio musician, he has recorded countless jingles and has soloed on many albums including Eddie From Ohio’s “IRODEFIDOHOME.” In addition, he has performed with orchestras backing up such legends as Beyoncé, Ray Charles, Josh Groban, Whitney Houston, Michael Jackson, Johnny Mathis, and Joni Mitchell, as well as Jimmy Page and Robert Plant in their Zeppelin UnLEDed World Tour. He has performed with the National Symphony Orchestra and the Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra of Washington, DC, has served as a concertmaster for the Alexandria Symphony Orchestra, and recently appeared on HBO as a member of the orchestra that supported the “We Are One” concert at the Lincoln Memorial, which kicked off the Inaugural week of President Barack Obama. Most recently, Dr. Wilson performed with Stevie Wonder in a 21-piece orchestra at the Library of Congress in the World Premiere of Mr. Wonder’s “Sketches of a Life.”

Dr. Wilson has appeared in international magazines to include The Strad, which – following a performance of the Barber Violin Concerto – stated, “Wilson’s performance stressed the warmth and romanticism of the music… [His] technical skills brought a sparkle to the Moto Perpetuo and overall, [Wilson] made music that had the stamp of quality.” The Washington Post has further observed his “pristine melodic lines” and “showering virtuosity.” Dr. Wilson has performed such acclaimed works as John Corigliano’s “The Red Violin: Chaccone for Violin and Orchestra,” after which he was praised by the award winning composer: “[Wilson’s] beautiful performance of my Chaconne…how gorgeous it was…and so true to the piece.” Following a performance of the violin solo to Theme from “Schindler’s List” under the baton of composer John Williams at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, The Washington Post singled out Dr. Wilson for his “impassioned violin solo.”

Dr. Wilson is a founding member of the highly acclaimed string duo, Bridging the Gap®, in which he performs with double bassist Aaron Clay. Hailed by The Washington Post for “superior arrangements and uncommon musicianship,” the unique duo performs works covering a wide range of musical styles in venues from private homes and schools to concert halls and stadiums. They released their first CD in 2003 and have become frequent guests of the Millennium Stage at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. In 2004, Wilson and Clay were honored by their home state when each received the Music Award by the Arts and Humanities Commission of Fairmont, West Virginia in recognition of their “outstanding leadership and devotion to the enhancement of the arts.”

Contact Peter Wilson: pwilson5@gmu.edu