American pianist David Buechner was born in 1964. He exhibited prodigious early talent at the keyboard, and earned distinction as the highest-placed American laureate during the 1986 International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow. During his teens and early twenties, Buechner achieved notable successes in a number of international competitions, including those of Leeds, Salzburg, Sydney, Vienna, and Via del Mar. Also a prizewinner in the Queen Elisabeth of Belgium contest, Buechner was outright winner of the 1984 Gina Bachauer International Piano Competition.
Thereafter, Buechner quickly secured engagements with many leading U.S. orchestras, among them the New York Philharmonic, Philadelphia Orchestra, Cleveland Orchestra, St. Louis Symphony, San Francisco Symphony, and the National Orchestra in Washington, D.C. Tours abroad have led to appearances with the Japan Philharmonic, the city of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, the Kuopio Philharmonic of Finland, and the Orquesta Sinfonica de Castilla y Lyon in Spain.
Buechner has also performed at the Hollywood Bowl and has a particular interest in film music, having released on the Koch International label a CD entitled The Paradine Case, featuring film concertos by Herrmann, North, and Waxman with the New Zealand Philharmonic and James Sedares. He has also recorded the complete solo piano music of Miklós Rózsa, issued in 1998. Other CD releases include recordings of works by Brahms, Busoni, Dvorák, Mozart, Stravinsky, and Turina. David Buechner underwent a gender reassignment in 1996 and is now known as Sara Davis Buechner.