Peter Oelrichs Duchin (born 28 July 1937) is an American pianist and band leader.
Duchin was born in New York City, the son of pianist and band leader Eddy Duchin. His mother was Marjorie Oelrichs, a Newport, Rhode Island and New York City socialite who died unexpectedly when he was just five days old. He grew up under the care and surrogate parenting of Marie and Averell Harriman, close friends of his parents
Duchin was educated at Eaglebrook School and The Hotchkiss School prep schools in New England. He spent time in Paris, France and studied at the Sorbonne before returning home and graduating from Yale University.
Duchin formed his first dance band in New York City, New York, USA, in 1962. Rather than attempt to update the classic big band sound, Duchin stayed close to the music’s traditions, beginning with a residency at the St. Regis Hotel in New York.
He quickly became a celebrated accompaniment to high society parties and gatherings, establishing a position within the capital’s upper social strata, which mirrored the achievements of his father. After three years at the St. Regis further engagements followed at the Fontainebleu Hotel in Miami and the Cocoanut Grove in Los Angeles.
In 1964, he married Cheray Zauderer, a divorced Manhattan socialite with whom he eventually had three children.
Duchin's music was much heard on MOR radio in the late 1960s and early 70s from albums and singles released on the Decca, Bell and Capitol labels. His single "Star Dust" reached #143 in the Cashbox survey, 1964.
Such was his popularity that Duchin was then able to form several orchestras bearing his name, each of which was available for bookings throughout the country. These combos became regulars at White House functions and balls, including the inauguration of President Johnson in January 1965. A contract with the Universal Pictures Studio allowed him to take his band into the world of film. However, this deal collapsed before many of the contracted films were completed. Duchin concentrated instead on live performance, and continues to do so at financially lucrative venues throughout America.
Here's "Dream Of Olwin" from above 1961 album.
There are certain people for whom a party doesn’t rate if the Peter Duchin Orchestra isn’t playing. Over the years Mr. Duchin, as both pianist and bandleader, has provided the musical entertainment at an estimated 6,000 celebrations. The list itself could function as a potted history of late-era American society, as it includes everything from Truman Capote’s Black and White Ball in 1966 to a joint bar and bat mitzvah reception for Ivan Boesky’s children on the Queen Elizabeth 2 to the wedding of Arnold Schwarzenegger and Maria Shriver.
Having divorced, in 1985 Peter Duchin married Brooke Hayward, (see photo) with whom he'd been cohabiting since 1981. The couple maintained a loft in New York City and a house in Washington in Litchfield County, Connecticut. In 1996 he published his memoir, Ghost of a Chance. In 2008, Brooke Hayward and Peter Duchin announced their separation and eventually divorced.
Duchin married Virginia Coleman over the 2012 Memorial Day weekend at the home of Kathy and Bill Rayner in East Hampton.
Mr. Duchin cut his engagement schedule by half when he turned 70, so that he now plays around 60 gigs a year, but he’s still a visible presence on the fall and holiday benefit circuits.
(Info edited mainly from Wikipedia & AMG)