Peter B. Kay first joined the Greater Spartanburg Philharmonic (now the Spartanburg Philharmonic) in 1997 as a member of the double bass section, and he performed regularly with the orchestra for 6 years. In 2006, he hung up his bow, and focused his graduate studies on musical composition. He joined the staff of the Philharmonic in February 2015 as Director of Operations and Personnel Manager. In the first few years on staff, his duties included at times: marketing director, graphic designer, website maintenance, composing/arranging, and artistic direction of the Espresso Series. By the 2018-2019 season, he became General Manager and Composer in Residence.
A Spartanburg native, Peter is a District 7 alumnus with close ties to the music community in town. He earned his Bachelor of Arts in Music from Furman University where he studied with Mark Kilstofte (composition) and Tim Easter (double bass). He went on to complete his Masters in Music and Doctorate of Musical Arts from the University of South Carolina in Columbia, SC where he studied with composers John Fitz Rogers and Reginald Bain. While at USC, he was fortunate to be the graduate assistant for the Southern Exposure New Music Series during which time it received the Chamber Music America / ASCAP Award for Adventurous Programming.
In 2004, the Philharmonic performed one of Peter’s works at their annual youth concert - his Masters thesis, Beowulf: A Musical Tale, with text translated by Natalie Grinnell (Wofford) and narration by Mark Ferguson (Wofford). Since the fall of 2015, his original works and arrangements have been a regular feature of the Espresso Series chamber concerts.
In addition to his musical background, Peter is a freelance graphic designer and an avid cyclist. While living in Charlotte, NC, he was a professional cycling coach with TotalCyclist, and he has been a competitive racer since 2002, racing for the Globalbike National Elite Team from 2011-2015.