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Sarah Off

Sarah Off

Assistant Professor of Violin & Music Business, Center for Arts Entrepreneurship Director

School of Music
College of Performing and Visual Arts

Contact Information

(970) 351-3173
Frasier 252
Mailing Address
University of Northern Colorado
School of Music
Campus Box 28
Greeley, CO 80639

Professional/Academic Experience

Violinist Dr. Sarah Off has established herself as an innovative and passionate performer, entrepreneur, music business professional and educator.

Her performances have been described as “receiving rapturous reception” (The Times, London), “brilliant and seamless with great focus” (AZ State Press) and “intuitively talented” (Bridge Initiative). As a soloist and chamber musician she regularly performs throughout the United States and abroad including Iceland’s Harpa International Music Festival, Manchester Music Festival in Vermont, Music in the Mountains Festival and Crested Butte Music Festival in Colorado, Oh My Ears New Music Festival in Arizona, the DiMenna Center in New York City, the Open Space New Music Festival and as soloist with the Boulder Symphony, the Greeley Philharmonic, and Durango’s Music in the Mountains Chamber Orchestra, among others. Her recent World Premiere performance of Dylan Fixmer’s Concerto for Violin was featured in The Times - London, on Radio Classique – Paris, and on Colorado Public Radio’s “Morning Edition” and “All Thing’s Considered”.

Sarah values collaboration and innovation in the music industry and as such has established herself as an advocate and catalyst of new musical and artistic endeavors and cross disciplinary projects. She has worked with the American Composer Alliance, the Arizona Contemporary Music Ensemble and has commissioned and performed numerous new musical works by such composers as Mari Esabel Valverde, Paul Elwood, Dylan Fixmer, Kohei Kondo and Elizabeth Kennedy Bayer. In 2022 she released an album highlighting a collection of pieces for solo violin by Dylan Fixmer.

From 2011-2018 Sarah performed as the violinist and co-founder of Tandem Duo and in true entrepreneurial spirit, she managed Tandem Duo’s live performance engagements, recording and educational outreach endeavors and oversaw the duo’s branding, marketing and promotion, and operations. As composers and advocates of new music, Tandem Duo’s primary mission was the creation of new work through cross-disciplinary collaboration. During their time, Tandem Duo hosted the International Kondo Festival which showcased the work of Japanese composer Kohei Kondo, performed three tours of the Western States, conducted numerous educational outreach events in Arizona and performed and taught as Resident Guest Artists at Southern Oregon University and Sam Houston State University. In 2017, Tempe Center for the Arts Theater Company commissioned Tandem Duo to compose and perform the original score for their production of the play Some Velvet Morning by Neil LaBute. Shortly after, Tandem Duo was named Resident Artist Group for the Tempe Center for the Arts. During their residency they collaborated with The Bridge Initiative Theater Group, EPIK Dance Company and the Torch Theater in various performance projects. Tandem Duo recorded and released two albums, Tandem Duo and Velvet Scraps during their TCA residency and in 2018 they released their final album Dear Elizabeth shortly after performing the premier of their score for the play “Dear Elizabeth” in collaboration with the Bridge Initiative Theater.

Sarah has combined her love of performance with her passion and expertise in the areas of music business and arts entrepreneurship. She is a sought after lecturer and clinician and has most recently given presentations for the Society for Arts Entrepreneurship Education, the International Ultimate Music Business Summit, the College Music Society, American String Teachers Association National Conference, Women in Jazz National Festival, the Colorado Music Educators Association Conference, and as a guest lecturer for the University of Wisconsin – Superior School of Music and the Old Dominion University Diehn School of Music in Virginia. In 2022 she served on the Society for Arts Entrepreneurship Student Learning Outcomes Committee at the invitation of Dr. Gary Beckman. Additionally, she served as a reviewer for Ari Herstand’s book “How to Make It In the New Music Business 3rd Edition” published by Highbridge Publishing. She is currently working on her own book on addressing the challenges of fostering the entrepreneurial spirit within traditional school of music pedagogy.

Sarah is an enthusiastic music educator and currently serves as Assistant Professor of Violin and Music Business and co-founder and Director of the Center for Art Entrepreneurship at the University of Northern Colorado College of Visual and Performing Arts. As an educator, Sarah aims to provide students with a solid understanding and command of their instrument and musicianship, balanced with expertise in entrepreneurship and business savvy. She believes that creativity, advocacy, business skills and community engagement are vital for the sustainability and progress of the arts in today’s industry.

Having grown up in the rural Colorado town of Del Norte, Sarah has a strong passion for finding opportunities for rural areas to experience the musical arts. She is co-founder and Artistic Director of the non-profit (501c3) organization VISIT SARAH OFF'S WEBSITE. Blanca Music Conservatory which brings music education and performance opportunities to students in Southern Colorado and the Western States through concert series, masterclasses, workshops, and scholarship opportunities. Mt. Blanca Music Conservatory is celebrating its eighth season in 2024.

Sarah received her BM from University of Colorado at Boulder under Judith Ingolfsson and Lina Bahn and her MM and DMA from Arizona State University under Danwen Jiang. Sarah’s doctoral studies at Arizona State University culminated in a final dissertation titled “Building Musical Communities in Rural Areas”. She believes in being a life-long learner and is currently completing a Certificate in Music Law from Berklee College of Music.

Sarah lives in Colorado and enjoys hiking in the Rocky Mountains with her husband, composer Dylan Fixmer and their dog, Bay.

Visit Dr. Off's Website