"When I step in front of a Marimba One, there’s a freedom knowing my musical ideas will be naturally translated into actual sound; a sense of being at home. Whether a multi-percussion concerto with orchestra, multimedia performance, or workshopping new music with a composer, it is invaluable arriving to a marimba I can count on."
Acclaimed as "the ingenious percussionist Peter Ferry," (Chicago Sun-Times), Peter Ferry is a young American percussion soloist re-imagining classical performances through contemporary repertoire and innovative collaborations.
Following his concerto debut at age 18, Ferry has been celebrated as "one of the most promising and committed soloists of his generation" by composer Michael Daugherty. Ferry has championed the percussion concerti of Joe Duddell, Emmanuel Sojourne, Michael Torke, Ney Rosauro, and Jacob ter Veldhuis among others. Online, Ferry's performances can be seen in high-quality videos including a forty-minute performance of Daugherty's percussion concerto "U.F.O."
A TEDx speaker, Ferry delivered the closing talk and performance on creative collaborations titled "Striking at the Edge." Ferry's work with choreographer Nick Pupillo, praised as "full of vitality" (Chicago Tribune), has been featured at Chicago's Harris Theater and Auditorium Theater. His Flames and Frequencies collaboration with live flame working glass artist Carrie Fertig was nominated for the Coburg Prize and inaugurated into the European Museum of Modern Glass's permanent collection with performances whose "effect is difficult to describe in words... cascades of new sounds... an impressive multicolored head theater whose effect can hardly be escaped" (Neue Presse Coburg).
A frequent touring recitalist, Ferry's solo shows have garnered reviews as "an artist of vision... presenting percussion in a stunning thoughtful way" (Rochester Fringe Festival critic Jeff Spevak). Recent projects include partnering with composer Marc Mellits on "Zodiac," a solo work for marimba consisting of one movement for each of the astrological horoscope signs. Ferry has given solo performances across the United States including in New York City (Firehouse Space), Chicago (Constellation), Atlanta (Goat Farm Art Center), and abroad (Sweelinckzaal at Conservatorium von Amsterdam).
His experimental Earsight Duo collaboration with video artist Xuan has been called "breathtaking... funny, boundary-pushing, thought-provoking" (Democrat and Chronicle). 1st Prize Winners of the SMIA Competition, Earsight Duo recently opened for GRAMMY-award winning ensemble Eighth Blackbird at South Carolina's Indie Grits Film Festival and were guests of the ensemble for a short residency at Chicago's Museum of Contemporary Art.
As a visiting teaching artist, Ferry has been an Artist-in-Residence at Western Michigan University, the University of South Carolina, the University of Washington, and the University of Baltimore, among others. Ferry has also been a guest artist at the Zeltsman Marimba Festival in New Brunswick, New Jersey.
In the American contemporary music community, Ferry has stepped in as a guest percussionist with acclaimed ensembles Alarm Will Sound, Eighth Blackbird, Third Coast Percussion, and Ensemble Dal Niente.
An alumnus of the Eastman School of Music where he studied with virtuoso performer/pedagogue Michael Burritt, Ferry graduated with the first ever John Beck Percussion Scholarship, an Arts Leadership Program certificate, and the prestigious Performer's Certificate recognizing "outstanding performing ability."