Peter Fanone (COL ’15) is a tried-and-true disciple of the musical and theatrical communities at Georgetown. He’s been honing his crafts since age four and getting better every step of the way, including perfecting his method acting firsthand at the Yale Theatrical Conservatory over the summer and shaping his musical voice back in the studio at his alma mater, Georgetown Prep. Since coming to Georgetown, he’s been highly involved in music and theater, acting in Mask & Bauble shows and singing with the Georgetown Chimes a capella group. Fanone is also focusing on his music career. In 2011, he released his first album, ‘Dreams, Fate, and Everything in Between,’ and he recently released his new single, “Santa Maria.”
What is your inspiration for your love of theater and music?
I think it really started for me in elementary school. I went to a Montessori where we were actually required to participate in the school show every year, and the entire class would do it,and that’s kind of where I found my love for it. My first show was as Linus in [“You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown”], and then I hit [it] off from there, continuing into high school and college. But for music, I think it began much earlier — I started playing the piano when I was 4. I went to a Filipino piano teacher who my nanny knew, and I really loved it and stuck with it, participating in a lot of competitions and winning a few gold cups. And I learned guitar kind of on my own and had a few lessons here and there.
What was your inspiration for your album Dreams, Fate and Everything in Between?
I started writing music in seventh grade, and I drew mainly from artists like Billy Joel [and] Elton John [and] also Coldplay and kind of piano-heavy artists. And I kind of grew from there, and now I’m going towards the indie rock scene, kind of like the Decemberists and Bon Iver. “Friends for Now,” my first single after my first album, is my first … nod in that direction. The way I was able to record my album was through my high school, Georgetown Prep, which actually opened a recording studio my sophomore year and had a staff [that] was able to help me.
Are you currently working on a second album?
I haven’t come up with a name yet, but I’ve finished the first song, and it’s going to be very folksy, incorporating harmonica and a number of new things I haven’t used in my music before. “Santa Maria” was my first true rock song, jumping off from Dreams, Fate and Everything in Between.
Are you working on anything in theater?
I’m in “The History Boys” with Mask & Bauble, and I play [the character] Scripps. It opens in two weeks so we’ve been going full speed ahead. It takes place in the ‘80s in Britain at a public all-boys school, which would be similar to a private school here in the States. It’s about a group of guys in a specific class who are being bred to go Oxford and Cambridge and all the best universities, and there is a very particular way that the headmaster and all of the teachers go about doing this. The headmaster shows little interest for the kids as they go through this transitional phase, challenging their sexuality and why they’re going through this college application process at all. [The play explores] the teacher-student relationship and how far that can extend [along with] issues of becoming too friendly with … students. My role is one of the Anglican students who acts [as] a moralistic figure within the play and is friends with all of these guys and doesn’t judge their decisions, whether they … are homosexual or find other things about themselves you might expect a religious person to take offense to.
Do you have a personal take on the subject matter because you had a different experience from the students in the play?
It’s interesting because I’ve kind of had two very different learning experiences, one [that was] very liberal, where you’re taught to be the best at whatever you want to be. Then, the second experience at Georgetown Prep, which was a part boarding [and] part day school where I was a boarding student, [was] similar to the show, [so] I could connect to the all-boys dynamic and the teacher-student relationship.