Since they came to Boulder in 1958, Margot and Christopher Brauchli have accumulated a lifetime’s worth of memories together, many of them revolving around music. “I made my living as a lawyer. But music has always been a vital part of our lives,” says Chris.
The couple’s activities include their longtime service on the College of Music Advisory Board and the Boulder Philharmonic Orchestra Board. They helped found the Boulder County Arts Alliance (originally the Boulder Assembly on the Arts and Humanities), the Colorado Music Festival and the Boulder Bach Festival. They collaborated with other area parents to start the Jarrow Montessori School—Colorado’s first school to follow that specialized teaching philosophy. In 1997, Chris received the Daily Camera’s Pacesetter Award for his contribution to the field of Arts + Entertainment in Boulder County. And in 2008, Margot—together with Judy Reid Collins—formed the Boulder Center for the Performing Arts, Inc. with the goal of raising awareness to fund the design and building of a performing arts center in Boulder; they raised more than $250,000 and hired Webb Mgt. and Research on the Arts to conduct two extensive studies on the necessity and feasibility of creating such a center. Since 2022, their efforts have been carried forward by other interested local residents.
Through it all, the Brauchlis have been loyal supporters of the College of Music for more than 40 years. The philanthropic leaders participated in the Adopt-a-Student Program, supported the Bruce Ekstrand Memorial Graduate Student Performance Competition and supported the expansion of our Imig Music Building with a gift to name the Berger Choral Faculty Studio in honor of their friend, composer and former faculty member Jean Berger.
“We’ve had many close friends on the faculty over the years, and Jean was one of them,” Chris explains. “He was a prominent composer and a great friend, and we used to play a lot of violin sonatas together. That gift was to honor our friendship and the College of Music’s role in the Boulder music community.”
“It’s impossible to enumerate the many ways in which the Brauchlis have made an impact by serving as members of our Music Advisory Board and various committees, providing financial support and devoting valuable time to advocacy,” says Dean John Davis. “During their tenure on the Music Advisory Board, they have been closely involved with our faculty, staff and students—from supporting scholarships and programs to helping to improve faculty compensation to participating in our music+ campaign.”
The Brauchlis’ love story began decades ago in Aspen when they were both students at the Aspen Music Festival and School. “I was a singer and a music history major, and then I met this character in Aspen,” Margot recalls. “Chris was a student there the summer before me. He came back to visit a violinist friend—who happened to be my roommate.”
Chris, who grew up in Oklahoma, was studying violin at the time. “I was never a music major, but I took lessons throughout much of my life off and on. I’ve always had great teachers and I still play chamber music,” he says. Margot has been a member of the Colorado Symphony Chorus since 1992 and remains an active member.
The couple married, spent two years in the Army, then moved to Boulder for law school. They immediately got involved in the music scene, with Margot joining the College of Music’s then-Festival Chorus. And, while raising four children, they’ve been involved in the local arts community ever since.
Congratulations on your well-earned distinction, Margot + Chris Brauchli!