One of America’s foremost character bass-baritones, Peter Strummer has been hailed for “giving a role maximum impact” by the Toronto Star and for his “warm, firm and agile voice” by Opera News. The Denver Post said of a recent performance, “This is a dream cast…Strummer is one of the most meticulous performers I know. His portrayals become highly individual, each formidably different whether as Bartolo or Don Magnifico, or Beckmesser or Pasquale…”
Peter’s international career started with humble beginnings: he was born in Vienna, Austria, and immigrated with his family to Winnipeg, Manitoba, when he was a child. He later moved to Vancouver, British Columbia, where he resided until he came to the United States to undertake his collegiate musical education. In the formative phases of his development as a singer he attended the Cleveland Institute of Music where as a student he was heard and then hired by Maestro James Levine, an opportunity that kick started his diverse and extensive career and has led to collaborations with some of today’s most highly regarded and sought after singers, stage-directors, and conductors.
As an artist who constantly reworks his roles and seeks to expand the breadth of his repertoire, Peter Strummer has earned a reputation for endowing his buffo characterizations in old and new works alike with further depth and humanity. Peter’s versatility as an actor is matched by his musical flexibility and his linguistic prowess, as he is fluent in over seven languages. Highlights of Peter’s extensive career include appearances with the Metropolitan Opera, San Francisco Opera, Houston Grand Opera, Washington Opera, Dallas Opera, New York City Opera, L’Opéra de Montréal, and the Canadian Opera Company, as well over 15 years of remarkable performances within German and Austrian opera houses.
Peter’s recent and upcoming engagements include Bartolo in Le Nozze di Figaro with Tulsa Opera, and Dr. Bartolo in Il Barbiere di Siviglia with Nashville Opera; the title role in Don Pasquale with Manitoba Opera; Reverend Arthur Baines in Elmer Gantry with Tulsa Opera; Dr. Dulcamara in L’Elisir d’Amore with Austin Lyric Opera; Dr. Bartolo in Il Barbiere di Siviglia with Las Vegas Opera; Il Sagrestano in Tosca with Seattle Opera; Don Magnifico in La Cenerentola with Tulsa Opera; and Sulpice in La Fille du Régiment with Palm Beach Opera.
Over his forty year career, Peter has appeared not only in the opera house but in performances recorded and commercially broadcast throughout the world. His appearances with the Canadian Opera Company as Melitone in La Forza del Destino and as the Sacristan in Tosca were aired on CBC Television, and his por
trayal of the Music Master in Ariadne auf Naxos with Milwaukee’s Florentine Opera was made into a film which has been seen throughout the United States on PBS. His performances as the Sacristan in TOSCA and as Melitone in La Forza del Destino, as well as a documentary film entitled The Making of an Opera which features Mr. Strummer as Melitone in La Forza del Destino, have been recorded by CBC Television and are available on commercial video in both North America and Europe. His performance as Devilshoof in The Bohemian Girl with Central City Opera has been released on Voce Records. In addition, many of his numerous performances in Europe have been broadcast on radio and television.
Peter Strummer is a passionate educator in addition to his expansive performance career. He is devoted not only to the technical development/foundation of his students, but also on making sure his students have a comprehensive approach to all aspects of performing through understanding the texts, in-depth musical study, and character interpretation. It is his passion for his students that not only led him to establish a successful private studio that has helped start the international career of multiple singers, but also led him to serve as the co-artistic director of the Land of Enchantment Opera Institute in Gallup, New Mexico with his wife, acclaimed soprano Linda Roark-Strummer. The Land of Enchantment Opera Institute is a comprehensive young artist training program that focuses on assisting singers with bridging the gap between collegiate education and the professional realm while interacting with faculty who are currently busy with their own careers within the opera business.
Peter is managed by Uzan International Artists.