Violist Patricia Heller studied viola with Lee Yeingst of the Denver Symphony, then Max Aronoff and Toby Appel at Philadelphia’s New School of Music. She studied the New Approach with Katò Havas in England and has been a member of the San Francisco Opera Orchestra since 1986.
While studying at the University of Denver’s Lamont School of Music Patty joined forces with composer Duane Heller. As the Heller Highwater Duo they performed music for viola and piano in the many places they lived before settling in the Bay Area. The duo was proud to be able to commission several new works for the ensemble. Patty now makes her home in Daly City. She frequently appears with her little Celtic band The Scottish Thistles and now performs with her daughter, cellist Julia Heller, in a new iteration of the Highwater Duo. Violist Patricia Heller is honored to join the Violins of Hope project and share the resonance of these remarkable instruments with our hurting world. She usually plays one of two violas, one made for her by Anthony Lane in Petaluma, CA in 2010 and one made in Belgium circa 1786 by B. Boussu.