Lifelong Learning Institute, Manassas

LLI: American Festival Pops Orchestra Presents “American Icons”

Hylton Performing Arts Center, Jacquemin Family Foundation Rehearsal Hall


Speaker/Host: Peter Wilson, conductor

Peter Wilson is an engaging and multifaceted violinist and conductor whose artistry The Washington Post has noted as “first-class.” He will present a lecture about the April 6 performance, American Icons by the American Festival Pops Orchestra, in which he will explore the most prominent of American composers and their most successful works. Peter will discuss the music’s impact, important elements to listen for, and the evolution of these works in the American musical landscape.

Peter Wilson serves as music director of the Virginia-based Richmond Philharmonic and Waynesboro Symphony as well as artistic director and conductor of the American Festival Pops Orchestra in the National Capital Region. He is the former senior enlisted music advisor to the White House, where he led countless ensembles as a Marine violinist for 30 years in direct support of five U.S. presidents. Peter holds degrees from Northwestern and Catholic University, where he earned his doctorate. He began his career as concertmaster of the Walt Disney World Orchestra and later soloed under John Williams, who hailed him as “a brilliant musical artist.” He is frequently invited to perform his moving solo violin arrangement of The Star-Spangled Banner for high-profile events including major league baseball games. A Cleveland native, Peter began to play the violin at age two, later moving to Morgantown, West Virginia, where he became the first musician to receive the Governor’s Award for Exceptional Achievement in the Arts. The Strad magazine encapsulated his performances best by stating, “[Wilson] made music that had the stamp of quality.” For further information, visit

This event is open to the public. For more information about the Lifelong Learning Institute, Manassas, visit