In Memory

Peter Bellinger

NAME: Peter Lake Bellinger

BIRTH DATE/LOCATION: 
March 28, 1947, Honolulu, Hawaii

DEATH DATE/LOCATION: 
April 18, 2001, San Francisco, California

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Photo: courtesy estate of Peter Lake Bellinger

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IDENTIFICATION AND BIO: 
Composer, Painter 
Attended San Francisco State University and a cooking school in Paris.

Peter Bellinger worked at the Mark Twain Hotel in downtown San Francisco for twelve years, starting as a bell boy and advancing to general manager. After leaving the hotel, he went back to college to study composition. Upon receiving his HIV diagnosis, he retired and began to pursue composition, and continued to write music for over ten years. He and his partner were together for nearly twenty-three years.

Peter Bellinger died of AIDS in Honolulu at the age of 54 on April 18, 2001.

"I have been improvising and composing music since the age of thirteen. For many years my primary interest was music with a theatrical focus: musical comedy, dance and movie music. Lately I have concentrated on choral work, taped dance-performance music and music for small instrumental ensembles.

"I am, broadly speaking, a composer of melodic music, but, like most creative people, I have a pretty healthy disdain for labels. My work runs the gamut from dissonant to consonant, chromatic to diatonic. I do not abide by the rules of any particular genre. I like experimenting with new concepts in music as much as I like reinterpreting traditional forms. My aim is to entertain people, not to educate them. Above all, I believe music should be reasonably accessible."

—Peter Bellinger

WORKS:

INSTRUMENTAL

Adagio 
for: violin, cello, piano 
date: 1996

Allegro "Matinee" 
for: violin, cello, piano 
date: 1988

Dances for the Garden 
for: guitar trio 
date: 1990

Dances for the Night Garden 
for: guitar trio 
note: new arrangement of Dances for the Garden 
date: 1999

Joe's Song 
for: string quartet 
date: 1991

Les Homages 
for: violin, cello, piano, clarinet 
date: 1998

One of Those Gray People 
for: horn, bassoon, piano 
date: 1988

Portraits of Children 
for: oboe and piano 
date: 1989

Maine Woods, Autumn 
for: clarinet, cello, piano, bongo drums 
date: 1992

Piece for J. & G. 
for: two cellos 
date: 2000

Sax Quintet 
for: five saxophones 
date: 1994

WORKS WITH SOLO VOICE

Blessings & Meditations 
for: mezzo-soprano, violin, cello, piano 
date: 1999

Ending 
for: mezzo-soprano and piano 
date: 1993

George's Tree 
for: tenor and piano 
date: 1988

God is a Verb 
for: mezzo-soprano, clarinet, bassoon, piano 
date: 1989

A Noiseless, Patient Spider 
for: soprano and piano 
date: 1990

Suite from "The Other Person" 
for: soprano, flute, clarinet, cello, piano 
date: 1992

CHORAL

Feathers 
for: SATB, piano, organ 
date: 1997

God is a Verb 
for: TTBB and piano 
date: 1991

God is a Verb 
for: SATB and piano 
date: 1998

Song of Love 
for: children's chorus and piano 
date: 1989

Triptych 
for: TTBB and piano 
date: 1993

ELECTRONIC

Counting Numbers 
for: computer music (for dance) 
date: 1993

Coventry Carol (arrangement) 
for: computer 
date: 1992

The Music Lesson 
for: computer music (for a student film) 
date: 1990

O Come, Emmanuel (arrangement) 
for: computer 
date: 1991

The Sign 
for: computer music (for a student film) 
date: 1988

Stories from My Childhood 
for: computer music (for dance) 
date: 1991

Touches of Reality 
for: computer music (for dance) 
date: 1992

Trash Troll 
for: computer music (for video) 
date: 1993

Two Marches 
for: computer music (for a parade) 
date: 1993

UNCOMPLETED WORKS: 
Unknown

WRITINGS: 
Unknown

DISCOGRAPHY: 
No professionally released recordings. All works recorded (concert performances or computer demos) archived on privately produced compact discs.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: 

  • Obituary, San Francisco Chronicle, Thursday, May 17, 2001.

PERFORMING RIGHTS AFFILIATION: 
N/A

RESOURCES: 
N/A

MUSICAL EXECUTOR: 
Joe Grubb (companion) 
730 2nd Avenue 
San Francisco, CA 94118-4021 
(415) 668-3656 
joegrubb@pacbell.net

OTHER CONTACTS: 
Unknown

ARCHIVES: 
All scores with Joe Grubb. 
All works archived on 3 self-produced CDs (live performances and computer demos).



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11/23/13 07:20 AM #1    

Paul Barnes

Peter was a good friend.  His wicked and incisive wit, keen intelligence, and slightly cynicism-tinged view of the world was always bracing -- and masked inner reserves of sweetness.  Really talented fellow, who it was my pleasure to know on the Cubberley stage and off.  Very sorry to learn of his loss.

Paul Barnes


04/19/15 04:49 PM #2    

Virginia Presley (Elliott)

Peter was such a talent. We attended the twentieth together. He was funny and yet had intensity. I am glad he was able to stop working a job and get on with his real work--music. He created a terrific musical "A Maid in Old London" if I have the title right and having coposed all the music played it all. Sorry to hear of his passing. Thanks Paul for another fine eulogy. 


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