is a composer
and producer of concerts and shows.
He was born in London in 1940 and educated at Feltonfleet (prep school) and Charterhouse. He served for 7 years in the army (the Life Guards) retiring as Captain in 1966. He studied music with a view to being a concert pianist and was appointed director of music at Falcon College near Bulawayo in Rhodesia (Zimbabwe) in 1969. He was called up to serve in the Rhodesian Army during the terrorist war at the time of the ‘Smith’ government. He was married in 1971 and has 3 children, his marriage being dissolved in 1986. Peter taught for several years as Director of Music at ‘Arundel School’ in Harare. He retired from teaching in 1987 and set up a piano tuning/restoration business together with a thatching business.
Throughout Peter’s 29 years in Africa he was always putting on concerts, shows and soirees. For many years he ran an African marimba band consisting of about 15 players and they were a main feature at his ‘Music under the Stars’ concerts.
Peter also plays the organ and violin and has spent all his life being a church organist as well as playing the violin in amateur orchestras. He returned to England in 1989 and settled in Redgrave, Suffolk. His compositions include works in all the genres except opera.
Peter formed The Redgrave Singers soon after arriving in England and has written several major choral works for them notably:
Peter’s musical comedy ‘The Rackety Rector of Rickinghall ‘ was performed in June 2012 in Redgrave Church. This production included a cast of 35 and over 30 songs . It was beautifully costumed and was very well received. The story related to the rector of Rickinghall who died in 1913 in the premises of a lady of easy virtue who lived near Covent Garden. Peter was inspired to write an entertaining ‘Musical’ when he was shown a press cutting from The John Bull magazine published in August 1913 with full details of the rector’s life and demise.
Peter Creswell has written 2 major works in 2013, both of which have been performed. In June ‘The Midsummer Hare’ was heard for the first time in Wortham Church and in July his new Mass in G minor sung by the Redgrave Singers took place in Redgrave Church. The story of a young hare born on the Redgrave and Lopham fen was written by Sue Heaser and Peter set this to music. Rather like ‘Peter and the Wolf’ there is a narrator. A chamber orchestra performed the work with Peter playing the piano. Other performances of this work have subsequently taken place.
Peter has been organist and choir master at Fressingfield Church for 17 years. He organises all sorts of concerts ranging from light hearted entertainment (Flanders & Swann, songs from the shows, music hall etc.) to full scale choral works with the Redgrave Singers. Peter has organised a major concert in the Parish Church, Diss. His oratorio ‘DAVID’ was performed as a charity concert in aid of the Household Cavalry foundation on Saturday November 22nd, 2014 with additional soloists and the Lord Lieutenant of Norfolk, Mr Richard Jewson attending as guest of honour.
Peter is currently busy working on commissioned music for the 100th Anniversary of R34 Arrival in America on July 6, 1919.