SARA FRAKER is Assistant Professor of Oboe at the University of Arizona and a member of the Tucson Symphony Orchestra. She spends her summers in residence as a Faculty Artist at the Bay View Music Festival in northern Michigan. She is principal oboist of True Concord Voices & Orchestra, which recently made their Lincoln Center debut; the ensemble also garnered two Grammy nominations for their 2015 CD release Far In The Heavens, on which Sara is a featured soloist. She was awarded a 2017 Artist Research and Development Grant from the Arizona Commission on the Arts for a solo commissioning and recording project, in collaboration with composer Asha Srinivasan and ecologist Robin Wall Kimmerer.
Sara held the Gillet Fellowship at the Tanglewood Music Center and was a participant in the Tanglewood Bach Seminar. She has also performed at the Aspen Music Festival, Shenandoah Valley Bach Festival, Chautauqua, Spoleto Festival USA, and the prestigious Schleswig-Holstein Orchestral Academy in Germany. Sara has played with numerous orchestras, including the Phoenix Symphony, Arizona Opera, Broadway in Tucson, St. Andrews Bach Society, Tucson Pops, Illinois Symphony, Champaign-Urbana Symphony, Brockton Symphony, Newton Symphony, New Bedford Symphony, Gardner Chamber Orchestra, and Sinfonia da Camera.
Sara has presented recitals at four recent conferences of the International Double Reed Society, including Tokyo and New York City. At the University of Arizona she teaches oboe pedagogy, reedmaking, oboe techniques for music education majors, Music in World Cultures, and chamber music. Sara performs regularly as a member of the Arizona Wind Quintet and has given masterclasses at universities and performing arts schools across the US and in Australia.
Raised in New Haven, Connecticut, Sara is a graduate of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (DMA), New England Conservatory (MM), and Swarthmore College (BA). She was a National Merit Scholar and recipient of the Garrigues Scholarship, Peter Gram Swing Prize, and Kate Neal Kinley Memorial Fellowship. Her principal teachers include Robert Botti, John Dee, Mark McEwen, Jonathan Blumenfeld, Sandra Gerster Lisicki, and John de Lancie. Her doctoral thesis, “The Oboe Works of Isang Yun,” explores twenty solo and chamber pieces by the Korean composer, with a focus on tonal language and relationships to East Asian philosophy.