Peter McGillivray


Peter McGillivray



The award-winning Saskatchewan baritone Peter McGillivray has been gaining accolades on both the concert and operatic stage. He won the Deuxième Grand Prix and prize for Best Canadian Performance at the Montreal International Musical Competition, a success followed by another top prize at the Queen Sonja Competition in Oslo, Norway. He previously gained national recognition at the CBC Radio-Canada Young Performers Competition in Calgary when he took home the First Prize as well as the Audience Award.

Mr. McGillivray has a busy season in 2015-2016 with engagements as Bartolo in ILBARBIERE DI SIVIGLIA for Pacific Opera Victoria and Opera Lyra Ottawa, Bartolo in LE NOZZE DI FIGARO for Manitoba Opera, CARMINA BURANA for the Amadeus Choir of Toronto and Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 in Regina on his schedule. He sang Mahler’s LIEDER EINES FAHRENDEN GESELLEN for Toronto Summer Music and his 2014/2015 season included the role of Father Palmer in SILENT NIGHT for Calgary Opera, Handel’s MESSIAH for the McGill Chamber Orchestra and Bartolo in LE NOZZE DI FIGARO for Opera Lyra Ottawa.

Packed with performances across Canada from Québec to Vancouver, in 2013-2014 he was heard with Opéra de Québec and Saskatoon Opera as Sharpless in MADAMA BUTTERFLY, the Vicar in ALBERT HERRING for Vancouver Opera, Dr. Falke in DIE FLEDERMAUS for Edmonton Opera, Schaunard in LA BOHEME for Manitoba Opera and on the concert platform, he was heard in Saskatoon in Ralph Vaughan Williams SEA SYMPHONY and Montreal in Bach’s JOHANNES PASSION. His 2012/2013 included Schaunard in LA BOHEME for Opera Lyra Ottawa, the world premiere of SHELTER for Edmonton Opera and the Vicar in ALBERT HERRING for Pacific Opera Victoria. On the concert stage, he sang Haydn’s DIE SCHÖPFUNG for the Georgian Bay Concert Choir, Bach’s Mass in B Minor for Kitchener’s Grand Philharmonic Choir and the Peterborough Singers and also appeared with the Talisker Players of Toronto. His 2013 summer festival season included ACIS AND GALATEA for both the Festival of the Sound and the Elora Festival and he was also heard for the latter in CARMINA BURANA.

Past seasons have been dominated by works including PAGLIACCI (Silvio), GIANNI SCHICCHI (Betto) and MOBY DICK (Stubb) for Calgary Opera, and GIANNI SCHICCHI (Marco) for the Canadian Opera Company. As a concert artist, he was heard with the Elmer Iseler Singers, the Windsor Symphony in Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, MESSIAH for the Grand Philharmonic Choir and in a special concert programme at the Festival of the Sound. A popular artist at summer festivals, he was featured as a recitalist at FestiVoix in Trois Rivieres (also broadcast by CBC/Radio Canada), the Elora Festival of Ontario and for the Luminato Festival, he appeared in Andrew Staniland’s DARK STAR produced by Tapestry, with further performances of Bach’s Mass in B Minor for the Festival of the Sound. He was in New York at the Metropolitan Opera as cover artist for Schaunard in LA BOHEME and Olivier in CAPRICCIO.

Other highlights include performances as Schaunard in LA BOHEME and Dolokhov and General Belliard in WAR & PEACE for the Canadian Opera Company, the World Premiere of Omar Daniel’s THE SHADOW for Tapestry, Falke in DIE FLEDERMAUS for Opera Hamilton, de Bretigny in Calgary Opera’s MANON, CARMINA BURANA for the Brott Festival in Hamilton Ontario and he also continued his participation in Tapestry’s groundbreaking initiatives ‘Opera To Go’, ‘Lib-Lab’ and ‘Opera Briefs’. He has sung the Duruflé REQUIEM for the Vancouver Chamber Choir, MESSIAH with the National Arts Centre Orchestra and the Winnipeg Symphony, Bach’s Mass in B Minor and Haydn’s DIE SCHÖPFUNG with the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir and Estacio’s THE HOUSES STAND NOT FAR APART with the Richard Eaton Singers in Edmonton.

A former member of the Ensemble Studio of the Canadian Opera Company, he made his professional debut as Aeneas in Purcell’s DIDO AND AENEAS and sang Schlendrian in a staged production of Bach’s COFFEE CANTATA. Further Canadian Opera Company credits have included Sid and the Vicar in Britten’s ALBERT HERRING, and Wagner in FAUST. He was seen as Demetrius in Britten’s A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM at Tanglewood and highlights of past seasons have included a Debut Atlantic tour of the Maritime provinces; recitals in Toronto, Montreal, Calgary, Saskatoon and Ottawa; and engagements with the Calgary Philharmonic, the Regina Symphony and l’Orchestre Symphonique de Québec.

Mr. McGillivray is a graduate of the University of Toronto’s Opera Division and he also holds an honours degree in Canadian History and Literature from the U of T’s University College. Having previously performed at the Ravinia, Aldeburgh and Aspen Music Festivals, he has been awarded grants from both the Jacqueline Desmarais Foundation and the Canada Council for the Arts. He has been a finalist and prize-winner at the Eckhart-Gramatté Competition, at the Lotte Lenya Singing Competition and at the Robert Schumann International Competition for Piano and Lied, held in the composer’s birthplace of Zwickau, Germany.

September 2015  



Britten Vicar/Sid
Ned Keene
Bizet Escamillo/Dancaïro CARMEN
Daniel Raoul/Hernando THE SHADOW
Donizetti Dulcamara/Belcore Enrico
Gilbert & Sullivan The Pirate King Giuseppe PIRATES OF PENZANCE
Heggie Stubb MOBY DICK
Leoncavallo Silvio I PAGLIACCI
Massenet de Brétigny MANON
Mozart Don Giovanni /Leporello Figaro/Almaviva


Offenbach Hermann/Schlémil LES CONTES D’HOFFMANN
Prokofiev Dolokhov/Belliard WAR AND PEACE
Puccini Betto/Marco/Gianni Schicchi GIANNI SCHICCHI
  Schaunard/Marcello LA BOHÈME
  Sciarrone/Angelotti TOSCA
Purcell Aeneas DIDO AND AENEAS
Puts Father Palmer SILENT NIGHT
Rossini Figaro/Bartolo IL BARBIERE DI SIVIGLIA
  Dandini/Magnifico LA CENERENTOLA
Strauss, J. Dr. Falke DIE FLEDERMAUS
Strauss, R. Olivier CAPRICCIO
Sullivan Pirate King PIRATES OF PENZANCE
  Baron Duphol LA TRAVIATA
Wagner Wolfram TANNHÄUSER
Walton Smirnov THE BEAR


Bach Weihnachtsoratorium
Kaffee Kantate
Mass in B minor
Matthäus Passion
Johannes Passion
Barber Dover Beach
Beethoven Mass in C major
Missa Solemnis
Symphony No. 9
Brahms Ein Deutsches Requiem
Liebeslieder – Book 1
Duruflé Requiem
Estasio The Houses Stand Not Far Apart
Fauré Requiem
Finzi In Terra Pax Let Us Garlands Bring
Handel Messiah
Haydn Die Schöpfung
Jenkins The Armed Man: A Mass for Peace
Ruth Watson Henderson From Darkness to Light
Mahler Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen
Des Knaben Wunderhorn
Mendelssohn Elijah St. Paul
St. Paul
Mozart Mass in C minor Requiem
Requiem in D minor
Orff Carmina Burana
Ravel Don Quichotte à Dulcinée
Rossini Petite Messe Solennelle
Stabat Mater
Schubert Die schöne Müllerin
Schumann Dichterliebe
  Spanisches Liederspiel
Staniland Dark Star Requiem
Vaughan Williams Dona Nobis Pacem
  Five Mystical
  Songs Hodie
  Sea Symphony




“There’s some strong singing, particularly from baritone Peter McGillivray as Dr. Bartolo… McGillivray received the most vocal applause at curtain. He’s a fine singer, particularly impressive during A un dottor della mia sorte, when a jealous Bartolo interrogates and lectures Rosina. McGillivray is also a gifted comic actor, one of those performers able to project humour and whimsy with a gesture or a look. His turns were among the most enjoyable of the evening.”  [Pacific Opera Victoria, Barber of Seville]
Victoria Times Colonist, Adrian Chamberlain

“…with really singing from Peter McGillivray as Bartolo…” [Opera Lyra, Barber of Seville] Opera Canada, Jean-Jacques Van Vlasselaer

“Among a very fine ensemble of singers, pride of place must go to baritone Peter McGillivray as Raoul/Hernando [Tapestry’s production of The Shadow]. His central role bears the biggest burden, and he negotiated the difficult and taxing score with great musical skill and all the dramatic chops to create a strong, pivotal character.”
Opera Canada, Wayne Gooding

“The various Gypsy roles were nicely cast too…The two gypsy men, Peter McGillivray as Dancairo and James McLennan as Remendado, provided comic relief and together with the ladies sang an excellent version of the famous quintet in the second act.”
Calgary Herald, Kenneth DeLong

“Baritone Peter McGillivray sang with force and conviction.” [Brahms’ Requiem]
Ottawa Citizen, Richard Todd

“Une très jolie voix…McGillivray a heureusement eu l’occasion do montrer sa réelle qualité d’acteur dès l’air suivant, celui où Leporello décline la list des maîtresses de Don Juan. Très a l’aise, l’interprète a bien fait rire quand il a sorti de sa poche un agenda électronique…L’extrait du Thaïs de Massenet, servie vers la fin de la première partie, est sans doute celui où le baryton a le mieux montré la qualité de son étoffe, à la fois ronde, brillante et riche…Un autre bon moment que celui où McGillivray a chanté l’air d’Onéguine, tendrement, en russe et, comme l’ensemble de son programme, de mémoire.”
Le Soleil, Richard Boisvert

“Tenor Michael Colvin and baritone Peter McGillivray were quite thrilling in the Pearl Fishers duet.”
The Globe and Mail, Ken Winters

“Deuxième prix au Concours international de Montréal l’an dernier, le baryton Peter McGillivray fut magnifique dans les deux oeuvres: timbre riche, conduite vocale impeccable, intelligence du texte, présence imposante. Il montra ces mêmes qualités-dignes du premier prix-cans un lied tiré d’un recueil de Korngold qui annonçait le Quintette pour piano et cordes du célèbre compositeur de musique de film.”
La Presse (Montreal), Claude Gingras

“A uniformly strong cast was led by baritone Peter McGillivray in the title role. Making a welcome return to Canada from. His current program of studies in Germany, McGillivray is clearly still on track for the important career that his success in competitions over the past couple of years has promised. The voice is full and strong, and he uses it with a great feel for cadence and line. He’s frankly a bit young to carry this role [Mazeppa] off convincingly, but that’s picky in the face of such musicality and commitment. His performance was extraordinarily rewarding to the audience.”
Opera Canada, Wayne Gooding

Albert Herring at the Britten Festival with the Britten-Pears Young Artist Programme in Aldeburgh
“Things perked up enormously with the arrival of the excellent trio of singers cast as Sid (Peter McGillivray), Nancy (Cerys Jones) and Albert (Allan Clayton): when all three were together, the stage crackled with sexual energy, fuelled both by the expressions of evidently love of butcher boy and baker’s girl, and unwillingly virginal Albert’s mounting frustration.”
Opera Magazine, Graeme Kay

Montreal International Musical Competition Peter McGillivray, héros de la soirée
“La prestation de Vendredi placerait nettement McGillivray à place de la Coréenne qui, entrant après lui, a paru complètement écrasée. La voix large et sonore du baryton, gran et bien droit, s’est superbement déployée dans une Romance àl’étoile (de Tannhäuser)…Mais le difficile air de Ford, de Falstaff, allait ensuite révéler un mécanisme vocal d’une rare clarté.”
La Presse, Claude Gingras

In Recital, Rosza Centre, Calgary
“The second half was devoted to three groups of songs sung by baritone Peter McGillivray. Also a CBC competition winner…McGillivray is a first –class recitalist. Blessed with a voice of considerable amplitude with a ringing top and a strong lower register, McGillivray showed his interpretive flexibility in exquisite performances of sons by the Canadian composer Derek Holman, Francis Poulenc, and Jean Sibelius. While all three sets were excellent sung, the Poulenc and Sibelius groups were especially fine, the character of the modern French songs beautifully interpreted, and the intense romanticism of the early Sibelius songs warmly presented.”
The Calgary Herald, Kenneth DeLong

La Bohème, Canadian Opera Company
“Two other Ensemble members, baritone Peter McGillivray as Schaunard, the musician, and bass-baritone Robert Gleadow as Colline, the philosopher, did themselves more than proud. Both sang outstandingly well, both took their lion’s share of the comedy with panache and (in the absence of girlfriends for them in the libretto) with a legitimate touch of camp.”
The Globe and Mail, Ken Winters

Albert Herring, Canadian Opera Company
“The finest singing of the evening came from baritone Peter McGillivray, as Albert’s friend Sid. He caught the colour and nuance of every word in his lines and delivered them with a round, cultivated tone that perfectly reflected his character’s self-satisfied suavity.”
Opera News, Christopher Hoile  


Catalogue Aria from Don Giovanni by Mozart. Recorded at Festivoix 2010.


“Voila donc la terrible cité” from Thais by Massenet





Peter McGillivray sings Don Magnifico in Rossini’s La Cenerentola alongside Stephen Hegedus, as Alidoro, and Michael Nyby, as Dandini.  Performances with the Edmonton Opera are on February 4, 7, and 9.

Enter the vain world of 1950’s haute couture, where appearances are everything and kindness is never in fashion. Mistreated by her wicked stepfather and stepsisters, Cinderella seems destined for a life of misery. But when she meets Prince Ramiro, Cinderella starts to find her own ‘happily ever after’— with a few obstacles along the way, of course.