Peter Witte, Dean
Peter Witte was appointed Dean of the Conservatory of Music and Dance and Professor of Conducting at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, August, 2008. During this time, the Conservatory has partnered with (le) poisson rouge, WQXR's Q2, the Kansas City Symphony, the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts, The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, the Friends of Chamber Music, the Kansas City Ballet, the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce, the Downtown Council, the Crossroads Arts District, the Arts Council of Kansas City, and the American Jazz Museum in connecting students and communities.
Previously Mr. Witte served as chair of the Department of Music at Kennesaw State University in metropolitan Atlanta, a position he held since 1999. At KSU, Mr. Witte helped plan and open the Bailey Performance Center, hailed as “a beaut” by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and as a “Georgia Jewel” by conductor Donald Runnicles. Additionally, Mr. Witte appointed more than thirty faculty and staff at KSU, many from the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and the Atlanta Opera Orchestra.
As a conductor, Mr. Witte joined colleagues from the Atlanta Symphony and Atlanta Opera in performances of works by Golijov, Schoenberg, Stravinsky, Turnage, and Volans at the Bailey Center, and facilitated residencies at KSU with eighth blackbird, Alex Ross, and Jennifer Higdon among others.
Committed to arts education and arts in communities, Mr. Witte has led performances in Carnegie Hall with the National Wind Ensemble and with the Atlanta Wind Symphony, with whom he served as Music Director for seven years. Prior to his conducting and administrative careers, he performed as an orchestral horn player with ensembles including the Atlanta Opera, the Toledo Symphony, the Windsor Symphony, and in summer festivals in Grand Tetons, and in Graz, Austria.
Presently, Mr. Witte serves on the Mayor's Task Force for the Arts in Kansas City, and sits on the Commission on Accreditation for the National Association of Schools of Music. Additionally, he is president of the board of the Youth Symphonies of Kansas City, president-elect of the Missouri Association of Departments and Schools of Music, and chair of the Board of Governors for the Alumni Society of the School of Music, Theatre and Dance at the University of Michigan.
While earning degrees at Michigan, Mr. Witte studied horn with Louis Stout, Lowell Greer, Bryan Kennedy, musicianship with Marianne Ploger, and conducting with H. Robert Reynolds, who remains a particularly close mentor.