Musical Director, Heidelberg Choral Society

Peter Bandy has earned himself a reputation as a conductor of considerable experience with successful performances in diverse genres including choral, orchestral, opera and ballet music. Alongside his performing talents are years spent learning his craft as Music Director, Music Arranger, Chorus Master and Orchestra Manager.

In 1976 whilst studying at the University of Western Australia, Peter won a conducting audition with the Western Australian Symphony Orchestra. In the same year he formed the Perth Oratorio Choir which performed all the major oratorios with professional orchestras.

A Western Australian Arts Council Grant in 1979 enabled him to study conducting under Vilem Tausky at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London. Since then he has conducted most of the major symphony orchestras in Australia and New Zealand. From 1978 to 1984 he was Music Director of the Western Australian Gilbert and Sullivan Society. He held the position of Chorus Master with Opera Australia and made his conducting debut with the company in 1989 with The Gondoliers.

His association with the Australian Ballet as Resident Conductor began in 1987. He toured with the company to New Zealand in 1992, conducting the Auckland Philharmonia in performances of Romeo and Juliet. New Zealand beckoned again in 1994, and over the next two years he conducted the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra and the Royal New Zealand Ballet, as well as the Christchurch Symphony and Auckland Philharmonia again.

Peter has inspired and taught generations of young musicians in his role as an educator. He was Music Director at St Hilda’s Anglican Girls’ School (Perth) and Ivanhoe Girl's Grammar School (Melbourne). He also ran conducting classes at the University of Melbourne for Music Education students, and conducting workshops for the Australian Band and Orchestra Directors Association.

Peter has adjudicated Music Festivals and Eisteddfods throughout Australia, in Perth, Bunbury, Canberra, Sydney, Traralgon, Warragul, Bendigo, Mt Gambier, Burnie, Ballarat (South Street) and Hamilton.

From 1996–98 Peter was Music Director of the Royal Melbourne Philharmonic Society and from 1993 to 2007 he was Chief Conductor and Music Director of the Melbourne Youth Orchestra, and many student members of this orchestra are now professional musicians. The repertoire performed included the symphonies of Mahler, Tchaikovsky, Shostakovich and Bruckner, Bartok's Concerto for Orchestra, Stravinsky's great ballets, Firebird, Petrushka and the Rite of Spring, and Pictures at an Exhibition by Moussorgsky/Ravel. All of this music gave a solid and thorough orchestral training to these young players.

Since 1995 Peter has been the Music Director of the Australian Conservatoire of Ballet, and as Music Director of the Heidelberg Choral Society since 2011 he has presented a vast choral repertoire to sell out audiences. He has also been Music Director of Sing Australia Hawthorn since 2014.