Peter Henderson / Piano
A versatile pianist, Peter Henderson is active as a performer in solo, chamber, and orchestral settings. Henderson is currently Artist-in-Residence and Associate Professor of Music at Maryville University, where he has served on the faculty since 2005.
Henderson performs frequently as an ensemble keyboardist with the St. Louis Symphony, and made his solo debut with the SLSO in January 2008. During January and February 2016, Henderson was piano soloist in the SLSO’s subscription concert and California tour performances of Messiaen’s Des Canyons aux étoiles…. Critics described him as a “powerhouse soloist” (San Francisco Chronicle) and praised his Messiaen playing for its “intense focus and thrilling vibrancy” (San Jose Mercury News). In addition to his keyboard playing with the SLSO, he occasionally gives pre-concert lectures, introducing subscription concert programs from the Powell Hall stage. During the 2019-20 season, Henderson performed on tour with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in New York, Europe, and Florida. Henderson was appointed Principal Keyboardist of the Sun Valley Music Festival Orchestra in 2015.
Henderson is an advocate of new music, having given several premieres of solo piano and chamber works. He enjoys offering solo recitals exploring focused repertoire: during the 2011-12 season, he performed the 32 piano sonatas of Beethoven; in November and December 2012, he presented the complete piano works of Debussy; and in November 2013, he played Chopin’s 27 études in a single concert. Henderson’s discography includes collaborations with violinist David Halen, flutist Mark Sparks, bass trombonist Gerry Pagano, violist Jonathan Vinocour, and soprano Marlissa Hudson. He appears on CDs published by AAM Recordings, AMP Records, and other labels, and is piano soloist on an album released during 2015 that features Fred Onovwerosuoke’s 24 Studies in African Rhythms. His most recent solo CD is A Celebration of African Composers for Piano (AMP AGCD 2706, released 2017).
Henderson has sought performance opportunities outside the traditional sphere of classical music, performing during 2018-19 with a quintet exploring the tango music of Piazzolla; and also embarking on solo and collaborative free improvisations. In addition to his teaching and performing activities, Henderson occasionally composes music and works as a recording producer. His composition for trombone and piano entitled Rückblick appears on Gerry Pagano's album "Solitude," released December 2018.
Henderson holds the degree Doctor of Music from Indiana University, Bloomington. He and his wife Kristin Ahlstrom, an SLSO violinist, live in St. Louis with their lively, sweet beagle/terrier-mix Zinni.