Skip to main content

Aston, Peter (George)

Aston, Peter (George)

Aston, Peter (George), English conductor, musicologist, and composer; b. Birmingham, Oct. 5, 1938. He studied composition and conducting at the Birmingham School of Music (1956–60), and then musicology at the Univ. of York (1964-69; Ph.D., 1970, with the diss. George Jeffreys and the English Baroque). He was a lecturer in music (1964–72) and senior lecturer (1972–74) at the Univ. of York. From 1974 to 1988 he was prof. and head of music at the Univ. of East Anglia, where he served as a professorial fellow from 1998. As a conductor, he was musical director of the Tudor Consort (1959–65) and the English Baroque Ensemble (1967–70). From 1975 to 1988 he was conductor of the Aldeburgh Festival Singers. In 1981 he co-founded and thereafter was artistic director of the Norwich Festival of Contemporary Church Music. He was composer-in-residence and principal guest conductor of the Zephyr Point Choral Festival in Nev. in 1991, 1993, 1995, and 1999. In 1993 he became principal guest conductor of the Sacramento (Calif.) International Bach Festival. Aston was elected a fellow of the Royal Soc. of Arts in 1980. He was made an honorary fellow of the Guild of Church Musicians in 1995 and of the Royal School of Church Music in 1999. As a conductor, he has led performances of works ranging from the 15th century to the present day. He is especially known for his dedication to vocal ensemble music of the 16th and 17th centuries, and of the 20th century British repertoire. He ed. the complete works of George Jeffreys. As a composer, he has written many sacred and secular vocal pieces.


With J. Paynter, Sound and Silence (London, 1970); The Music of York Minster (London, 1972); with J. Webb, Music Theory in Practice (3 vols., London, 1992-93).


DRAMATIC: Sacrapant the Sorcercer, children’s opera (1967). CHAMBER: Nocturne for Flute and Percussion (1965); 3 Pieces for Oboe (1968). VOCAL: Five Songs of Crazy Jane for Soprano (1963); Three Shakespeare Songs for Soprano and Chorus (1964); My Dancing Day, chamber cantata for Soprano, Tenor, Flute, Clarinet, and String Quartet (1966); Haec Dies, Resurrection cantata for Chorus and Organ (1972); CarmenLuminis, cantata for Chamber Choir and Wind Quintet (1975); The True Glory for Chorus and Orch. or Organ (1976); A Song of the Lord, thy Keeper for Chorus, String Orch., Piano, and Percussion (1983); From the Book of Thel, threnody for 5 Solo Voices or Small Chorus, after William Blake (1983); A Mass for All Saints for Chorus and Organ (1987); Where shall wisdom be found? for Chorus (1991); The King of Love for Soprano, Chorus, and Organ (1992); Psalm 150 for Chorus and Organ (1995); How lovely is your dwelling-place for 2 Choruses (1996); O be joyful in the Lord for Chorus and Organ (1999).

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Aston, Peter (George)." Baker’s Biographical Dictionary of Musicians. . 22 Oct. 2018 <>.

"Aston, Peter (George)." Baker’s Biographical Dictionary of Musicians. . (October 22, 2018).

"Aston, Peter (George)." Baker’s Biographical Dictionary of Musicians. . Retrieved October 22, 2018 from

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

The Chicago Manual of Style

American Psychological Association

  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.