Pianist Sara Davis Buechner first transgender artist to perform with Charlotte Symphony

Posted on: February 3, 2022

Sara Davis Buechner in a past performance with Canada’s Victoria Symphony. Buechner performs Clara Schumann’s Piano Concerto with the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra on Feb. 11 and 12.

“Pianist Sara Davis Buechner [has] played all over the world…. Typically, for the host orchestra, she’s the first transgender guest artist they’ve accompanied,” writes Page Leggett in Tuesday’s (2/1) Charlotte Observer (NC). “She’ll be first again when she takes the stage Feb. 11 and 12 with the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra…. ‘We didn’t intentionally seek her out because she’s a transgender artist,’ said Carrie Graham, the symphony’s director of artistic planning. ‘But we are … welcoming to individuals who identify as transgender, and we’re thrilled to present her.’ … Her status as a transgender woman is a non-issue with the musicians with whom she performs. But … the classical music world wasn’t always completely accepting. ‘I was shocked at the time of transition that it really almost cost me my career and my livelihood,’ she said…. ‘Through sheer perseverance … I built it back up.’ … With the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra, Buechner has been invited to be part of pre-show talks, led by … guest conductor Kensho Watanabe…. ‘Very often when I go places to play now, I’m invited to talk to LGBTQ groups—especially to youth groups,’ she said. ‘…I’ve become a role model. I didn’t have any role models when I was younger.’ ”