Multi-faceted percussionist and educator Peter James Saleh has been studying and performing music for over 18 years. He is a founding member of the Exit 9 Percussion Group, with whom he has performed hundreds of times. In March 2009 he presented his solo recital program, "Mostly Multi" as well as master classes throughout Kaohsiung, Taiwan and Seoul, Korea. Other notable performances with and without Exit 9 include Princetonís McCarter Theater, The Juilliard School, the Jeju International Brass Festival, Seoul University, Zimmerli and Montclair Art Museums, NJPAC, the George Street Playhouse, Dallas' Bass Hall, Laguardia School for the Performing Arts, NYC's Town Hall, the New York Musical Theater Festival at the Ailey Citigroup Theater, TMEA, Western Washington University, Drew University, NJ's Count Basie and Two Rivers theaters, NJMEA, and Rutgers University in addition to hundreds of NJ/NY/PA school districts. He has also performed with renowned artists Matthew Barney, Bob Becker, Tigger Benford, Simon Boyar, Christopher Deane, Mark Ford, Ney Rosauro, and She-e Wu and performed and recorded under conductor Eugene Corporon with the North Texas Wind Symphony on the GIA and Klavier labels.
Eager to contribute to the ever evolving percussion repertoire, Saleh's collaborative work with composer Dajeong Choi includes 5 world premier performances of her compositions. He led the commission of composer Bruce Hamilton to write 'Stamino Sosti' for percussion quartet with tape, which he premiered with Exit 9 in May 2008, and performed the world premiere of his Mark Zuckerman commission, "Selah" in Kaohsiung, Taiwan in 2009. His own composition for percussion quintet ExitIX Novum received second place in the 2007 PAS Composition Contest and other ensemble scores of his are performed throughout the country. Additionally, his Trio for Flute, Cello, and Marimba was premiered by the HELIX! contemporary music ensemble. He is published through Keyboard Percussion Publications, Innovative Percussion, Drop6 Media, and RowLoff Productions.
In addition to the above and work with Greenwich Village Singers, FringeNYC, the Plainfield and Monmouth Symphony, and Bravura Philharmonic, he has also performed steadily for years as a modern dance musician in NJ and NY, blending his affinity for improvised music with an inventive Ďmulti-percussionistísí approach. In addition to scoring works by NJ/NY choreographers, Peter has appeared at ACDFA, performed and worked with Paulette Sears and Julia Ritter, and was the resident composer/accompanist for Christian Von Howard at ĎTerpsichore IIIí in South Carolina. Since 2006, he has also been the composer/accompanist with Paul Taylor Alumna Raegan Bliss Wood at SYPW at NJPAC, where he scores a brand new 25-minute work of choreography every July.
As an educator, Saleh's students have successfully auditioned at some of the percussion best programs in the country, including the Juilliard School and Manhattan School of Music. He founded and directs the Rutgers Youth percussion Ensemble (originally the Central Jersey Youth Percussion Ensemble 2000-2009), guest-lectured at Rutgers University and the Juilliard pre-college, and fellowed at the University of North Texas, and has served as a teaching artist for the Brooklyn Academy of Music and Young Audiences of NJ. He is also on faculty for the Youth Orchestra of Central Jersey and the newly formed Mason Gross Extension Division, the pre-college arts program at Rutgers University, and is a member of BMI and PAS. His conducting experiences extend past those of the premieres of his own music, to that of Warren Benson, Carlos Chavez, David Gillingham, and others. Saleh was also a performer with the 1998 Crossmen and 1996-1997 Jersey Surf Drum and Bugle Corps and has been able to apply that experience to several award winning high school programs since then.
Saleh holds Bachelors or Arts and Bachelors of Music Performance degrees from Rutgers University and a Masters degree in percussion performance with a minor in composition from the University of North Texas. He is grateful to have studied with fantastic teachers including Christopher Deane, Mark Ford, Tommy Igoe, Dr. Robert Schietroma, Ed Soph, Leigh Stevens, and She-e Wu as well as composition with Dr. Joseph Klein, Dr. John Mallia, and Dr. James Worlton.