Crested Butte Chamber Music Intensive



The Crested Butte Music Festival is pleased to announce the second annual Chamber Music Intensive, led by Emily Ondracek-Peterson and Erik Christian Peterson in beautiful Crested Butte. Small ensembles of serious, amateur musicians will be coached by world-class artists in a supportive, inviting atmosphere. The Intensive is unique in its intimate atmosphere and unequaled access to coaches; the participant-to-coach ratio is capped at 3:1. Additionally, coaches will perform with participants and lead hikes and other outdoor activities.

The high-level artistry from both players and coaches combines with a special, collegial ambiance to create an intimate, boutique experience. A unique bond is engendered amongst all musicians who travel to Crested Butte, as music and nature come together in one glorious duo.

The Intensive blends superb music making with the rejuvenating power of nature for an unforgettable week in paradise.


Here’s what 2017 participant, Wendy Cieslak had to say about her experience at the innaugural Chamber Music Intensive:


  • Application fee - $35
  • Tuition - $975
  • Optional Housing at WSCU - $300

Tuition includes daily coaching and masterclasses. Travel is not included. See venue section for more information about housing option.

  • Schedule + Performance
  • Five days of coachings with daily masterclasses will culminate in a capstone performance. Participants will receive a professional audio recording of their performances.
  • Example Schedule
  • 9-10 AM: Rehearsal
  • 10-11 AM: Coaching
  • 12-2 PM: Lunch + Masterclass
  • 3-4 PM: Rehearsal
  • 4-5 PM: Coaching
  • Evening: Concerts, music lectures, dinner on own, group activities


  • Morning: Hike or mountain bike ride
  • 11-1 PM: Lunch
  • 2-3 PM: Rehearsal
  • 3-5 PM: Coaching
  • 5-6 PM: Rehearsal
  • Evening: Concerts, music lectures, dinner on own, group activities
  • Schedule subject to change
  • Repertoire
  • Repertoire is contingent on instrumentation and ability of participants. At the time of acceptance, potential selections will be discussed and determined.
  • Ability
  • This program is for approximately 20 intermediate to advanced instrumentalists who want to focus on chamber music, pursue their own mastery of craft, gain ample performing experience, and meet fellow musicians.
  • Individuals or pre-formed ensembles are welcome. Please see application requirements below for more information on how to apply.
  • Instrumentation
  • Musicians of all orchestral disciplines are welcome.
  • Details:
  • There are limited spots in the 2018 Chamber Music Intensive program, so early submission is encouraged. For placement and quality purposes, video auditions are encouraged. The videos should be representative of your playing and show contrasting styles.
  • Individuals: Submit with your application a YouTube video (can be set to unlisted if you prefer) of two contrasting works.
  • Pre-formed groups: Existing ensembles will be accepted without audition, but a video recording of the ensemble is appreciated as it will help to prepare coaches.
  • Upon acceptance, successful applicants will receive follow-up information pertaining to repertoire and ensembles. Tuition for the program is due in full at the time of acceptance.
  • Please direct any questions, comments, or concerns to co-artistic director, Dr. Emily Ondracek-Peterson.
  • Timeline:
  • Deadline: July 1, 2018
  • After this date, please contact Dr. Emily Ondracek-Peterson to see if there are any remaining spots. Applications are reviewed and accepted on a rolling basis.
  • Notification: You will be notified 1-2 weeks after we receive your application
  • All applicants will be notified regarding the success of their application.
Erik Peterson
Click for more info.

• Violist and founding member of the acclaimed, NYC-based Voxare String Quartet

• Soloist with NY Philharmonic, recordings with Naxos, Albany, Toccata

• Chamber Music America ASCAP Award for Adventurous Programming

• Professor of musicology and chamber music at Metropolitan State University of Denver

• Lectures at Oxford, Princeton, NYU

• Co-Artistic Director of the Crested Butte Music Festival

• Trained at the Juilliard School, Cleveland Institute of Music, and Case Western University

Emily Ondracek-Peterson
Click for more info.

• 1st Violinist and founding member of the acclaimed, NYC-based Voxare String Quartet

• Soloist with NY Philharmonic, recordings with Naxos, Albany, Toccata

• Chamber Music America ASCAP Award for Adventurous Programming

• Professor of Violin / Director of String Studies and Chamber Music at Metropolitan State University of Denver

• Professor of Violin at Teachers College, Columbia University

• Former New York Philharmonic Teaching Artist

• Co-Artistic Director of the Crested Butte Music Festival

• Trained at the Juilliard School and Teachers College, Columbia University

Altius Quartet

• Prizewinners in numerous international competitions, including 2016 Alice and Eleonore Schoenfeld International String Competition, the 2014 Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition, the 2014 Coltman Chamber Music Competition, and the 2013 Plowman Chamber Music Competition

• Mentored by the renowned Takács Quartet as Fellowship String Quartet-in-Residence at the University of Colorado-Boulder

Anastasia Pike
Anastasia Pike

Dr. Anastasia Pike serves on the faculties at Teachers College Columbia University, the Peabody Institute of The Johns Hopkins University, and Christopher Newport University; she is also the founder and director of the Christopher Newport University Harp Festival.

Anna has delighted audiences including European royalty, Supreme Court justices, senators, congressmen, legislators, and celebrities, and has performed on national and international television, in venues including New York's Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center, Washington, DC's Kennedy Center, Boston's Jordan Hall, and Baltimore’s Lyric Opera House. She has also performed with members of the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields, the BBC Symphony Orchestra, the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra, the City of London Sinfonia, the Chamber Orchestra of Europe, the English Philharmonic, Europa Galante, the London Mozart Players, L’Orchestra des Champs Elysees, the Melbourne Symphony, the Metropolitan Opera, and the Philadelphia Orchestra, as well as with artists including Renée Fleming, Kristin Chenoweth, and the Irish Tenors. Locally, she has appeared as principal harpist with the Fairfax, Harrisburg, Richmond, and Virginia Symphonies.

Anna is also a member of The Sprezzatura Duo, formed with fellow harpist Kate Loughrey. "Sprezzatura" means "the art of making something difficult look effortless." The duo demonstrates the art of "sprezzatura" in their fun, creative, and entertaining concert programs that appeal to audiences of all ages. In 2012, Anna and Kate co-founded the Harps for Kids Foundation, a nonprofit 501(c)(3) public charity that provides lessons and community outreach programs to local youth. The Sprezzatura Duo performed at the American Harp Society's 2016 National Conference in Atlanta, giving the world premiere of their second commission.

In addition to her career as a concert harpist, Anna is also an award-winning pianist, and maintains studios of both piano and harp students. She has also been featured on more than 10 different CDs as both harpist and/or pianist.

As an arts educator, Anna has conducted national and international research, and has interviewed artists including Pierre Boulez, Alice Chalifoux, Evgeny Kissin, and Leonard Slatkin. She has written articles for the American Harp Journal as well as entries for several encyclopedias by Salem Press. Anna has presented at the Mid-Atlantic Harp festival, and is a regular presenter at the College Music Society's (CMS) National Conferences; she was the Event Director and lead panelist of the day-long 2016 CMS Pre-Conference Workshop in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

In 2017, she presented at the Global Awareness Society International conference in Heredia, Costa Rica, and at the 2017 American Harp Society's (AHS) Summer Institute in Northfield, Minnesota. Anna also performed as part of the Elán Ensemble at the AHS conference, and conducted a harp ensemble at Les Harpes Camac Festival USA, where her students gave the world premiere of Dr. Evan Meier's Variations on an Antique Theme, commissioned specifically for the Festival.

She was awarded the United States Navy's CMC Award for her volunteer work providing therapeutic music to the wounded warriors at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.

Anna received her doctorate from Columbia University, and has master's degrees from the Peabody Institute of The Johns Hopkins University, Pensacola Theological Seminary, and the University of Maryland, where she also received two bachelor's degrees with honors. She completed additional studies at the Juilliard School, the MasterWorks Festival - London, and, upon personal invitation, to the Salzedo School. Her primary instructors were the late Grammy award-winning Cleveland Orchestra principal harpist Alice Chalifoux and former National Symphony Orchestra harpist Jeanne Chalifoux.

She serves as President of the Washington, DC chapter of the American Harp Society, and is available for limited performance engagements.

  • The program is being housed at the impressive and modern facilities at Western State Colorado University.
  • Optional Housing is available on the Western State Colorado University Campus for an additional fee.

Registration for this program is closed for 2018


Slide background
Slide background
Slide background
Slide background
Slide background

About The Festival

In its 22nd season, CBMF is a summer music festival that serves the communities on the Western Slope of the Rocky Mountains. Performances feature a diverse range of genres including symphony, opera, chamber, bluegrass, gypsy jazz, and dance from leading artists throughout the world. A multitude of educational programs provide hands-on experiences for students of all ages and abilities.

About Crested Butte

Host to one of the country’s finest wildflower displays in the summer and a rich tradition of local, unique culture, Crested Butte sits at an elevation of 8,909 feet and is nestled at a confluence of stunning mountain ranges. Access to ample backcountry makes Crested Butte a leading outdoor destination for mountain biking, hiking, fly fishing, wildflower viewing, and, in winter, challenging skiing at the Crested Butte Mountain Resort.

Crested Butte is approximately 30 minutes from Gunnison, 1 ½ hours from Montrose, and just over 4 hours from Denver.

Check out our visit page for more information about transportation, lodging, and activities in the Gunnison Valley.