Wilson Hall 3038
Byron W. Petty, (b.1955) flutist, pianist, composer, and conductor holds a BM degree in flute performance from the Peabody Conservatory of Johns Hopkins University, where he studied with the noted flutist, Britton Johnson. As a member of the ARDO DUO, Petty and his wife, Dr. Shuko Watanabe Watanabe (piano) have performed throughout the Eastern U.S. and in Japan. He has served as Instructor of Piano at Roanoke College, VA and Instructor of Flute and Piano at Southern Virginia University. He is a Lecturer in Music (Flute) and has taught courses in Composition and Musical Analysis as Visiting Assistant Professor of Music at Washington and Lee University. Petty has appeared frequently as a solo pianist and chamber musician on the Con Spirito Concert Series of Roanoke, Virginia and has been a judge for the 21st through 23rd annual Bartok-Kabalesky-Prokofiev International Piano Competition held at Radford University, VA, the 2003 Virginia Music Teachers Association Collegiate Concerto Competition, and the Bland Music Scholarship Competition. From 1995-2002, Petty was the Conductor/Music Director of the Eurydice Community Orchestra of Roanoke, VA and subsequently, the Artistic Director from 2002 through 2003. Appearances with both Con Spirito and E.C.O.R. have been broadcast on Public Radio’s Music Around Roanoke 89.1 FM. In March 2009, Petty appeared as guest conductor with the University – Shenandoah Symphony Orchestra in a performance of Felix Mendelssohn’s Piano Concerto #1 in G minor, Op. 25 with his wife Dr. Shuko Watanabe as soloist.
As a composer, his works have been performed at the 2010 National Conference of the Society of Composers’ Inc., regional meetings of the Society of Composers Inc., Southeastern Composers’ League, College Music Society, and at the 1994 National Alliance of Saxophonists Conference held at West Virginia University. He has appeared in 1993, 1995, and 2003 on programs of the New Horizons Concerts of New Music at Radford University, VA. Petty was selected as the Virginia Music Teachers Association Commissioned Composer for 1995. From 1996-1998 he served as Composition Chair for the Mid-Atlantic chapter of the College Music Society, where he established a composition competition for college students. As Independent Composer Representative on the National Executive Committee for the Society of Composers Inc., (2000-2002) Petty’s commentary From the Smug to the Bitter and an interview with D.C. area composer Donna Kelly Eastman were published in the SCI National Newsletter. Petty has received commissions from the K. & W. Group Inc., Olin Conservation Inc., the Department of Geology of Virginia Polytechnic Institute, the Toho Koto Society of Washington D.C. and numerous private commissions. Recent compositional performances and premieres include: Before it happens--- for clarinet and orchestra performed by the Sweet Briar College Chamber Orchestra / Rokudan (orchestration) for koto and orchestra with the D.C. Youth Orchestra and the Washington Toho Koto Society at the Historic Lincoln Theater in D.C. and at the University of Maryland / Gestures from the Bridge for Orchestra, performed by the Eurydice Community Orchestra of Roanoke, VA / Moon Shadows for small Orchestra by the Elon University Orchestra of Elon, NC. In July 2003, Petty appeared as featured Composer in Residence for the Contemporary American Theater Festival, held at Shepherd College, Shepherdstown, West Virginia, presenting a master-class and two concerts of his works including the specially commissioned Mysteries of the Orchard Series. In 2006, Crowd Control for orchestra was commissioned by the Rockbridge Community Orchestra of Virginia. Fire Henge for flute and organ was premiered by faculty from the University of Chattanooga Tennessee at the Southeastern Composers’ League Forum on February 15, 2008. In September of 2009, Marshall University in Huntington, W VA hosted a recital devoted to new works by Petty; 11 compositions were premiered. The composer presented a convocation the following day to music students and faculty at Marshall. In October, three of Petty’s compositions were included in a program given on the Counterpoint Concert Series in Chattanooga, TN by ARDO Consort. A CD of recent compositions by Petty titled Traveler’s Tales was released by Capstone Records in 2007, now through PARMA Records / Naxos Distribution. A new CD of chamber works, titled Tendrils, has been released in 2010 by PARMA Records / Navona label / Naxos Distribution. Both CDs are available through Amazon.com, i-Tunes, i-Phone, etc. In February, 2011 Petty delivered a convocation lecture on the “Value of Modern Music” followed by a performance of three of his works for French horn and piano at the Virginia Polytechnic Institute in Blacksburg, VA. This performance was repeated at the WVTF FM Public Radio Station’s Music Salon, Roanoke, VA in conjunction with a month long exhibit of Petty’s paintings (acrylic on canvas) on varied themes connecting art and music.