We had the good fortune of connecting with Susie Peek and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Susie, how has your background shaped the person you are today?
I grew up in a town full of scientists- Los Alamos, New Mexico. The scientific laboratory was the only big employer. We were up on a mesa, isolated, surrounded by canyons and mountains, at 7300 feet elevation. Lovely weather, fantastic schools, safe town. The major impact I see from this is that I grew up among people who were extremely well educated and who valued education and knowledge. I’m betting we had more than the normal amount of super-achieving students in our town of 13,000. So I grew up thinking that working hard and doing well was normal and expected. So I did well in school, went on to college with merit scholarships and, am having success as a professional violinist, which is a career that takes a ton of hard work and perseverance! Los Alamosans also valued music, and so the public schools began instrument classes in 4th grade. Because of this, I was able to start the violin. I doubt it would have occurred to me to play the violin if this opportunity had not been presented. We had a youth orchestra, and we had a community symphony orchestra, and a high school music department with a huge selection of chamber music. So for fun, we played chamber music in the orchestra room in our free periods. To this day, that is my favorite way to socialize……..with wine and dessert after!
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
I’m a professional, free-lance violinist. I’ve played with all the major orchestras in the area- Colorado Symphony, Central City Opera, Boulder Philharmonic, Opera Colorado, Colorado Ballet and more. I perform for weddings and events, and teach private violin lessons. I started violin in the 4th grade, and practiced a lot- it has always been the main focus of my life. I was a music major in colleges, have a degree in music education and did graduate studies in violin performance, before getting my first job in Charlotte Symphony, in North Carolina. After 13 years there, I wanted to come back to this part of the country, so I moved here with no job, and no friends, and have made my way, with a lot of hard work and determination. One of the hardest things about being a professional orchestra musician is that you have to take, usually, a lot of auditions all over the country before you land your first job. Once you have the job, you have to keep it, by always being well prepared and dependable. It takes hours a day of practice to do a good job, as a violinist. And I have to keep up my skills, even now, when, because of COVID, my performances have been cancelled. I love to share my knowledge and experience with my violin students, and see them get happiness from playing the violin. I love to play for weddings, and be involved in creating music that will set just the perfect mood. I love the fact that music is an international language and has the power to evoke emotion and unite people, and that I get to be a part of that. What do I want the world to know? Music is important-support live music and musicians!
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
The other thing, besides music and education, that I received from growing up in Los Alamos was a love of the outdoors, especially mountains. When my friends visit, I take them on a drive over Trail Ridge Rd. in Rocky Mountain Natl. Park. We go on hikes. If they like beer, we’d visit my favorite breweries- Bruz and De Steeg. We’d eat at Tacos Jalisco and have big margaritas! I might take them along when I went to play a wedding in the mountains, and an opera at Central City Opera, if it’s summertime, or to a concert with one of the many orchestras I play in.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My parents for my upbringing, and all my music teachers and colleagues from whom I have learned.
Facebook: Peek Violin Lessons, and Peek Performances Wedding and Event Music
Other: Wedding Wire-Susie Peek- Alpine Duos and Peek Performances