An accomplished oboist with an international performing career, Sara Renner currently serves as Principal Oboe of the Springfield (MO) Symphony Orchestra and Artist Faculty of Oboe at the Omaha Conservatory of Music. Sara frequently performs with Omaha, South Dakota, Sioux City (IA) Symphony Orchestras, and various ensembles in the greater Omaha area. As an international artist, she has performed for the RioWinds (Brazil) Festival (Virtual), OperaMaya International Music Festival, and the 2022 International Double Reed Society Conference, where she was a performer for the world premiere of 3x3x3 by Luke Dahn. Sara has performed with a variety of artists, including Baritenor Michael Spyres, Dame Evelyn Glennie, Amy Grant, Michael W. Smith, and Celtic Woman. An advocate for new music, Sara commissioned a set of new works for unaccompanied oboe and English horn for her first solo album, Oboe: Unfolded, which was released in 2020. In 2021, Sara performed a virtual recital of Oboe: Unfolded for the 2nd Annual International Double Reed Society Virtual Symposium. Sara can also be heard on oboist and composer Alyssa Morris’s newest album, Ruminations (MSR Classics Label, 2022), where she played Oboe 2 on Parable of a Stormy Sea. This collaboration led to a featured recital of music for oboe trios on the celebrated Vespers Concert Series in Omaha, Nebraska in 2023, including the Midwestern Premiere of Parable of a Stormy Sea.
In the summer of 2017, Sara joined the festival orchestra of the OperaMaya International Music Festival as Principal Oboe, where she performed across the Yucatan Peninsula. During this time, Sara served as the Guest Principal Oboe for the Camerata de Cancun. In 2018, OperaMaya made history as the first Western classical music performance in the city of Mahahual, and in 2019, the first Western classical music performance in Francisco Uh May,
Tulum. Sara currently serves as Principal Oboe and Woodwind Faculty for OperaMaya.
A passionate educator, Sara strives to find every opportunity she can to teach. She has held teaching positions across the country, including Washburn University, University of Alabama, and University of Nebraska-Omaha. Her masterclass appearances (in-person and virtual) include Angelo State University, University of Kansas, Stephen F. Austin University, University of Arizona, Columbus State University, and others. Sara was appointed as Artist Faculty of Oboe at the Omaha Conservatory of Music in 2021, where she teaches Applied Lessons, Music Theory, and works with the Music in College Club.
As the former principal oboist of the Shen Yun Performing Arts New York Touring Company and Shen Yun Symphony Orchestra, Sara has performed in almost every major opera house and concert hall in the United States and abroad, including Carnegie Hall, Boston Symphony Hall, Chicago Symphony Center, the Kennedy Center, the David Koch Theatre at Lincoln Center, the Barbican Centre (London), The Arts Centre (Melbourne), Bunka Kaikan Theatre (Tokyo), and others. Sara completed three international tours with Shen Yun, performing across Canada, Europe, Argentina, Australia, Taiwan, Japan, and Korea.
Sara’s research and scholarly interests lie within the realm of theology as performance and connecting early music to contemporary works. Her article “A Musical Sacrament: The Trinity of James MacMillan’s The World’s Ransoming” was a featured article in the 2020 International Double Reed Society Virtual Symposium, and is published in The Double Reed (Vol. 43, No. 2), the journal of the International Double Reed Society.
Sara holds both a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Performance from the University of Nebraska-Omaha and the Columbus State University Schwob School of Music, respectively. She received her Doctorate of Musical Arts in 2019 from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, where her secondary discipline was Musicology with an emphasis in Early Music. Her teachers include Dr. Mark Ostoich, Dwight Parry, Christopher Philpotts, and Dr. Susan Hatch Tomkiewicz.
When not making oboe reeds or practicing, Sara enjoys yoga, running, and scary movies. She volunteers annually at Calvin Crest Camp, Conference, and Retreat Center in Fremont, NE as a camp counselor for high school students.