Amanda Schwengel and Polina Saran

December 08, 2022

Arts and Culture

VIDEO: Mi Vida Strings shop owners’ love for music plays through to the next generation

These alumni support local musicians, and now their daughter has joined MSU Denver’s musical family.

Amanda Schwengel and Polina Saran

December 08, 2022

Editor’s note: Throughout fall, RED’s Made in Denver series will highlight Mile High business owners who graduated from MSU Denver programs.

When Michele and Eric Trujillo met as students in Metropolitan State University of Denver’s orchestra in 1996, they had no idea they would be making more than just music. The husband and wife have been together ever since and are the owners of Mi Vida Strings, a full-service string shop in Westminster.

Following in their footsteps, their daughter and fellow musician Maiya Trujillo enrolled in fall 2022 at MSU Denver, where she plans to participate in Mariachi Los Correcaminos, the Department of Music’s popular student ensemble. Like her mother, Maiya plays the violin, and she picked up the electric bass as her second instrument during Covid-19.

“I think the mariachi group would be a fun way to branch out and start a new style,” Maiya said.

RELATED: ¡Viva mariachi!

She also works with her parents at Mi Vida Strings, touching up varnish work on instruments that need restoration. The shop repairs instruments but also builds fine instruments from scratch for museums, auction houses, educators and musicians. The Trujillos also rent instruments to beginners.

Mi Vida Strings recently partnered with Kolstein Music Inc., in New York City, which Eric says is a world leader in fine stringed instruments.

“It’s going to put us on the world map as far as a leader in fine string instruments and will let more people know we’re here to build instruments and service the community with high-end restoration,” he said.

The family is happy to have been a part of Denver’s music community for nearly 30 years and to continue their legacy through Maiya’s love for music.

“I grew up in the shop … (and) I’ve always been an artist,” Maiya said. “Whenever something comes in that’s chipped or stripped or bare, I go in and make it look beautiful again.”

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