Peter Slowik

  • Professor of Viola

Areas of Study


  • BM, New England Conservatory Music, 1979
  • MM, Eastman School of Music, 1981


Profiled by the Strad magazine as “a man of limitless energy and purpose—he mentors high achievers who make their mark in top positions the world over,” Peter Slowik is in high demand as an artist-teacher. He has been a featured performer and teacher at six International Viola Congresses and has recorded on the Deutsche Grammophon, deutsche harmonia mundi/BMG, American Grammophone, Erato, and Cedille labels.

An active chamber musician, Slowik has performed with William Preucil, Anner Bylsma, and Leonard Rose; the Mirecourt Trio, the Jasper, Saint Petersburg, and Vermeer Quartets; the Smithsonian Chamber Players; and members of the Cleveland, Chester, Orford, and Smithson Quartets. Past orchestral associations include service as principal violist of the Smithsonian Chamber Orchestra, Concertante di Chicago, and the American Sinfonietta. Master-class appearances have taken him to Australia, New Zealand, China, Europe, Canada, and major conservatories across the U.S.

Past teaching posts include Northwestern University, Indiana University, the Cleveland Institute of Music, and the Eastman School of Music.

Slowik's viola students have won first prize in numerous competitions, including the ASTA National Solo Competition, the Johannsen International Competition, the Ohio and Chicago Viola Society Solo Competitions, the Juilliard Concerto Competition, and the Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition. They perform in such major American orchestras as the Chicago Symphony, Minnesota Orchestra, San Francisco Symphony, and National Symphony, and in university appointments throughout the country.

In addition to his role on the Oberlin faculty, Slowik serves as artistic director for the chamber music program Credo.

Slowik has been named to the highest teaching awards at both Oberlin, Teaching Excellence Award in 2009;  and Northwestern, the McCormick Professorship for Teaching Excellence in 1999.

In 2002, Slowik received the Maurice Riley Viola Award from the American Viola Society for “outstanding teaching, scholarship, and performance.”

Spring 2024

Principal Private Study - Viola — PVST 005
Secondary Private Study - Viola — PVST 055
Viola Orch Repertoire Class — APST 282
Chamber Music — APST 800
Contemporary Chamber Music — APST 805

Fall 2024

Principal Private Study - Viola — PVST 005
Secondary Private Study - Viola — PVST 055
Chamber Music — APST 800


Peter Slowik Premieres New Compositions

October 28, 2022

Peter Slowik gave the world premiere of four new compositions for solo viola in a concert at Old South Church in Boston on October 22. All told, twelve new compositions were premiered by three violists, Slowik was joined by his former student Daniel Orsen ’16 and Jordan Bak.

Peter Slowik Serves as Judge for Johansen International Competition

March 31, 2022

Professor of Viola Peter Slowik served as judge at the prestigious Johansen International Competition in Washington, D.C., March 22-24. The triennial competition attracts over 150 competitors from all over the globe, competing for nearly $70,000 of prize money.

Peter Slowik and Louise Zeitlin Featured in Journal of the American Viola Society

January 4, 2022

The Journal of the American Viola Society (AVS) celebrates "Fifty Extraordinary Leaders in Fifty Years" with an article that features Oberlin Professor of Viola Peter Slowik, former AVS President and host of International Viola Congress and Associate Professor of Community Engagement and former secretary of AVS Louise Zeitlin.

Oberlin viola faculty present at 2019 ASTA conference

March 5, 2019

Conservatory faculty violists Peter Slowik and Kirsten Docter represented Oberlin's String Department and led master classes at the 2019 American String Teachers Association Conference in Albuquerque, New Mexico on March 8 and 9. Professor Slowik taught the viola collegiate master class, while Professor Docter coached the chamber music master class.


Semester Ends with a Packed Performance Calendar

December 8, 2023

Oberlin Conservatory’s student and faculty performers have been filling most concert venues throughout the campus over the last week. During these final five bustling days before students head into reading period and then exams, this explosion of activity feels something akin to the thrilling finale of a fireworks display on New Year's Eve. So, join in—even from a distance. All of these concerts are free and open to the public, and all but one of them can be streamed live at concert time at .