Peter Boyer was born in Providence, Rhode Island in 1970. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Rhode Island College, and Master of Music and Doctor of Musical Arts degrees from The Hartt School of the University of Hartford. He then studied privately with composer John Corigliano in New York, and moved to Los Angeles to study film/TV scoring at USC, where his teachers included Elmer Bernstein.
To date, Boyer has worked primarily as an orchestral composer for the concert hall, where he has enjoyed much success. His orchestral works have received well over 200 public performances, by more than 80 orchestras. He has conducted recordings of his music with the London Symphony Orchestra and the Philharmonia. His concert works have received national broadcasts by NPR in the U.S., and by radio networks throughout Europe and Australia. He has received seven national awards for his work, including two BMI Awards for young composers, the First Music Carnegie Hall commission, the Ithaca College Heckscher Prize, and the Lancaster Symphony’s annual Composer’s Award. Orchestras which have performed his music include the Dallas Symphony, Nashville Symphony, Pacific Symphony, Phoenix Symphony, Brooklyn Philharmonic, Buffalo Philharmonic, Fort Worth Symphony, Kansas City Symphony, Virginia Symphony, Hartford Symphony, and dozens of others.
Boyer’s major work Ellis Island: The Dream of America for actors and orchestra, which celebrates the historic American immigrant experience, has been his most successful composition to date. With over 100 performances by 50 orchestras, it has become one of the most performed large-scale American orchestral works of the last decade. Boyer’s recording of this work, with a cast of renowned actors, was released by Naxos in its American Classics Series, and nominated for a Grammy® Award for Best Classical Contemporary Composition.
In addition to his work for the concert hall, Boyer is active in the film and television music industry. He has orchestrated music for a number of major films, including Star Trek, Up, Speed Racer, and Mission: Impossible III (all for composer Michael Giacchino); twice arranged music for the Academy Awards telecasts; and composed music for The History Channel series Engineering an Empire. Boyer holds the Helen M. Smith Chair in Music and the rank of Full Professor at Claremont Graduate University, where he has taught since 1996. More information can be found at www.PropulsiveMusic.com.