Sarah Balzer


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  • Chicago, IL

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  • Doctor of Musical Arts, University of Maryland 2020
  • Master of Music Performance, DePaul University 2015
  • Bachelor of Music Performance, University of Maryland 2013



Background & Experience

Dr. Sarah Balzer is a freelance oboist and teacher in the Baltimore, D.C. area. Growing up in Chicago, she began her oboe studies at the age of ten. She earned her Bachelor of Music degree in oboe performance from the University of Maryland, College Park in 2013 studying with Mark Hill. She received her Master of Music in oboe performance at DePaul University studying with Eugene Izotov and playing with the Civic Orchestra of Chicago. In 2020, she completed her Doctor of Musical Arts degree at the University of Maryland, College Park. Her dissertation explored modern works for oboe quartet (oboe, violin, viola, cello).

Sarah has performed with the Quad City Symphony, Elmhurst Symphony, and the Kalamazoo Symphony among others. She has participated in summer festivals including the Banff Center, Domaine Forget Academy, and YOA Orchestra of the Americas. A graduate of the YOA Global Leaders program, she has taught and performed in venues across Chile, the Dominican Republic, Honduras, Jamaica, and Mexico.

As a teacher, Sarah coaches at the DC Youth Orchestra Program ( as well as maintains a private teaching studio in the Baltimore and D.C. area. She previously taught at the People's Music School in Chicago.

An active chamber musician, Sarah performs with Potomac Winds, a Washington D.C. based ensemble. A recital performed in February, 2020 featured works for oboe quartet from the last half century.