The Composer

The composer is: Dr. Peter A. Petroff!

Dr. Petroff was born in Memphis, Tennessee, but grew up in Chicago, where he studied piano at the Sherwood Music School. After secondary school, he chose to study medicine rather than music although his childhood dream was always to “be a composer“.

He graduated medical school in 1968 and completed an internship, residency and fellowship. He entered the practice of medicine in San Antonio, Texas in 1976 and has retired from practicing medicine, although he regularly lectures medical students. Throughout his professional life, his avocation has been composing for the piano.

In 1987, Dr. Petroff realized that if he wanted to obtain his childhood ambition of composing music, he must begin to work seriously. He studied piano with Ms. Delores LeBlanch, and later Marsha Bufler. He studied orchestration and composition with Earl Hoffman.

In 1992, Nina Drath, who is from Poland, contacted Wojciech Czepiel, a noted Polish conductor and composer about a new piano concerto she wanted to perform. After seeing the rough draft of Dr. Petroff’s First Piano Concerto, Wojciech agreed to do with with Miss Drath in Krakow the following October (1992). The concerto was recorded later and made its “American debut” in Waco, Texas, January 22, 1998, again with Miss Drath (to whom the work is dedicated) and Mr Czepiel.

In 1993, Dr. Petroff gave his first recital for the Fredericksburg Music Club (Fredericksburg, Texas). later that year, Musicopia performed the Piano Quintet with Pauline Glickman at the piano.

Most of the Dr. Petroff’s piano pieces have been published by Vivace Press (St. Louis, MO) or RBC Publications (San Antonio, TX). They include a “complete studies” folio, which is a collection of arrangements of traditional Filipino folk songs, and numerous children’s pieces.

Dr. Petroff has always been interested in education and has sponsored a piano competition for piano students in grades 1 thru 12. The first Petroff Piano Competition was held January 13, 1996, with more than 50 south Texas students taking part. (Lists of competition winners and details about up-coming competitions can be found under the “About” section of this site.

The next (25th) Petroff Piano Competition is scheduled for March 7st, 2020 at the composer’s home in Fair Oaks Ranch, Texas (suburban San Antonio).

Dr. Petroff’s “Homage to Cohan and Sousa“, written for FIVE pianos, was performed by Christopher O’Riley and four advanced students attending the “4th Texas State International Piano Festival” (San Marcos, Texas).  A recording was aired on Mr. O’Riley’s Emmy Award winning PBS television program, “From The Top” in September 2013.

Take a peek at the Sherwood School’s Site