Northern Arizona University
JOHN GREER is an active vocal coach, accompanist, conductor, arranger and composer and is heard in these capacities throughout Canada and abroad, in recital and on various CBC broadcasts. He is an honoured music graduate of both the University of Manitoba where he studied piano and composition with Boyd McDonald and of the University of Southern California where he was a student of pianists Gwendolyn Koldofsky and Brooks Smith and harpsichordist Malcolm Hamilton. His conducting instructors and mentors include James Fraser-Craig, Boris Goldofsky and David Effron.
Mr. Greer has been fortunate to have worked in recital with many of Canada’s most talented young singers of his generation: Nancy Argenta, Tracy Dahl, Rosemarie Landry, Linda McGuire, Kevin McMillan, Mark Pedrotti, Catherine Robbin, and Michael Schade, to name a few, as well as the renowned American singers/teachers Linda Mabbs, Carmen Pelton, Ashley Putnam, Carol Webber and Delores Ziegler.
As a faculty member of the University of Toronto opera division Mr. Greer made his conducting debut in 1983. He has conducted numerous operas there as well as works for Victoria’s Opera Piccola, Ottawa’s Opera Lyra, The Banff School of Fine Arts, the Toronto Gilbert & Sullivan Society and Mirvish Productions. He has worked on numerous productions with Opera (Hamilton) Ontario and has been a coach, chorus master and assistant conductor for the Canadian Opera Company. In addition to his freelance activity, Mr. Greer was the Music Director of the Eastman Opera Theatre in Rochester, New York from 1996-2001, held the same position at the Opera Studio at the University of Maryland from 2001-3, was Director of Opera Studies for Boston’s New England Conservatory from 2003-10 and was Head Coach of Voice and Opera for the University of Kentucky in Lexington, KY from 2011-14. For ten seasons his summers were occupied with his duties as General Manager and Head of Music Staff for the Janiec Opera Company at the Brevard Music Center in North Carolina.
Mr. Greer’s compositions include ten song cycles, two one-act children’s operas and various other works for voice and chorus with diverse instrumental accompaniments. These compositions have been heard worldwide, most recently at the first “Greeriad”, an exclusive performance of Greer compositions in Copenhagen, Denmark. A recent Aldeburgh Connection CD features two of Greer’s song cycles; Allegory of Sweet Desire with soprano Adrianne Pieczonka and his Liebesleid Lieder for vocal quartet and piano, four hands.