Equally at home in vocal and instrumental repertoire, Cara Chowning is in demand as a coach and collaborative artist. She has performed extensively throughout the United States, South America, and Europe as duo partner, chamber musician, and orchestral pianist. She has served on the accompanying faculties of the Cleveland Institute of Music and the American Institute of Music Studies in Graz, Austria, as well as the faculties of Simpson College, Oklahoma City University, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and currently at Ball State University. She returns this season to the Bar Harbor Music Festival as pianist and music director; is the invited collaborative pianist for the 16th Festival Internacional de Flautistas (ABRAF) in São Paulo, Brazil; and partners in recital with Bernhard Scully, Audrey Babcock, and Village Trio.
As music director, conductor, and pianist, Cara has prepared opera and musical theater productions at the professional, young artist, and collegiate levels. She has served on the music staff of Cleveland Opera, Lyric Opera Cleveland, Opera Cleveland, and the Bar Harbor Music Festival in the capacities of Assistant Chorus Master, Staff Pianist, Coach, and Musical Director. Cara’s former students and singers from her private coaching studio can be heard in young artist programs, theater series, and opera houses such as the Metropolitan Opera, Kansas Lyric, Union Avenue Opera, Minnesota Opera, San Francisco Opera, and Writers Theatre. Cara is a frequent guest on recital series throughout the Midwest and Northeast Ohio and has been broadcast on WFMT, WCLV, and Iowa Public Radio. She has performed at the International Horn Symposium, National Flute Association Conventions, North American Saxophone Alliance Regional Conferences, and International Double Reed Society Conference as competition pianist and recitalist.
Cara holds a B.M. degree in piano performance from Northwestern University, an M.M. degree in collaborative piano from the Cleveland Institute of Music, and a D.M.A. degree in accompanying and vocal coaching from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.