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Sara Fraker is the Associate Professor of Oboe at the University of Arizona School of Music 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. Sara is principal oboist of True Concord Voices & Orchestra and a featured soloist on their two recent album releases, one of which garnered two Grammy nominations.

Sara's innovative collaborations often explore intersections of music and ecology. She collaborated with dendrochronologist Margaret Evans (UA Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research) and Australian composer Lachlan Skipworth to commission Pine Chant (2021) for reed trio and electronics, a project inspired by tree-ring data and climate crisis. The piece was featured in the podcast For The Wild, the Arizona Republic, Arizona Daily Star, and won "Work of the Year – Chamber Music" at the 2023 Australian Art Music Awards. 

She served as executive producer, score editor and oboist for two recent recording projects, Johanna Beyer: Music for Woodwinds (New World Records, 2022; editions published by Frog Peak Music) and Hans Winterberg: Chamber Music (Toccata Classics, 2018). Sara recently premiered and recorded an exciting new commission for oboe and piano by composer S. Maggie Polk Olivo, entitled White Sand & Gray Sand (2020). In 2024, she played the North American premiere of Lachlan Skipworth's Oboe Quartet (2020) for oboe, violin, cello and piano.

Thrilled to recently join Buffet Crampon's roster of artists, Sara plays a Légende oboe.

Sara is the recipient of an 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. The resulting piece, Braiding, was featured on CBC Radio in 2020. An advocate for interdisciplinary creative work, she is an affiliated faculty member at UArizona’s Institute for Resilience (AIR).

With pianist Casey Robards, Sara released the album BOTANICA on MSR Classics in 2019. She has also recorded for Summit Records, Toccata Classics, Analekta, and Reference Recordings. She has presented recitals at six recent conferences of the International Double Reed Society, including Tokyo, Boulder and New York City. Sara is oboist of the Arizona Wind Quintet, which enjoyed a residency at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM) in Mexico City and has toured extensively through the Southwest. She has given masterclasses at universities and performing arts schools across the US and in Australia. Sara performed the Mozart Oboe Concerto with the Sierra Vista Symphony and Jennifer Higdon's Oboe Concerto with the UA Wind Ensemble.

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 Orchester Akademie 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.

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.

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