By Ellie McKinnon
Petra’s life continues to be filled with music, and although she continues to love classical music, she is reaching into new genres. Currently she is exploring bluegrass and jazz and studying on line with Darol Anger through ArtistWorks. As we discussed the learning curve, she laughed recalling that she anticipated ‘fiddling’ would be easy to pick up and less difficult than playing her violin in the classical manner. She found just the opposite to be true. She feels that, “classical music requires discipline and precision to produce the notes just as they are written on the page while bluegrass and jazz include improvisation which requires pulling music from the heart and soul.”
Jason and Petra perform at the Idaho Bluegrass Open Mic at Liquid, in Boise, April 23, 2019
She’s also discovered pleasure in working with numbers and with computers. This has been fortunate for the Boise Baroque Orchestra. In addition to playing in the orchestra, she is currently serving as the orchestra’s webpage manager, the BBO’s Music Librarian, and does considerable data analysis as well. And even in these tumultuous times Petra knows how to have fun. You might catch her biking or heading off to the mountains to go camping. Or you might find her at Boise’s Powderhaus Brewing Company on the 4th Monday of the month, playing violin or cello with her bluegrass friends or her new duo partner, composer Scott Carter.
Petra is a continual ambassador for the Baroque Orchestra. She hopes every member of the BBO family will spread the word about this wonderful ensemble. For example, one evening at a performance of the Boise Philharmonic, Petra struck up a conversation with a woman in the next seat. Petra told her about the BBO. That person, Helen Carter, is now president of the Boise Baroque Orchestra Board. Petra is fortunate to be one of the Orchestra’s sponsored musicians. She is delighted that patrons like her sponsor, Michelle Crawforth, have stepped forward to recognize members of the Orchestra. And the Boise Baroque is fortunate that Petra Schwarthoff is part of the Orchestra’s family.
Oh Holy Night Petra with Vashti and Chad Summerville at Extreme Holiday