David R. Docter
April 8, 1936 – 2021
David Reinhardt Docter Born on April 8, 1936, in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Dave grew up in Florida and California and studied at the University of California at Santa Barbara and at the University of Minnesota, where he earned his doctorate in music. In 1968, he helped found the Department of Music at Normandale Community College. There he directed the choral program, served as chairman of the department, taught various music courses and presented annual Madrigal dinners. In 1982 he founded the Normandale Chorale Society which continues today as the Bloomington Chorale. Dave married fellow music educator Rita Kanne in 1966. Together with their three children, they became passionate members of the Twin Cities classical music community.
In 1978 Dave received a grant through the American Scandinavian Foundation to study Danish Choral Music, which included a Fulbright Travel Grant. The family lived in Copenhagen while on sabbatical for 14 months and travelled around Europe in a VW camper van. This love of travel continued to propel Dave and Rita to beautiful locations including Hawaii, Crater Lake, the Grand Tetons, Yellowstone, and the Rocky Mountains as baby sitters for their grandchildren. Since his retirement in 1996, Dave worked with various Bloomington organizations, including the Fine Arts Committee, the Bloomington Symphony, and the Sister City Committee. As President of the Young People’s Symphony Concert Association, he was an honorary Board Member of the Minnesota Orchestra. He also undertook several archival projects for the orchestra.
Dave enjoyed getting together with friends, reading, traveling, attending concerts, and appreciating the outdoors. Dave’s curiosity and interests earned him many lifelong friends, who kept his spirits buoyed as he battled pancreatic cancer over the past year. His voice, which was strong until near his passing on May 15, reflected his passion for life. He is survived by his wife Rita, children Peter (Amanda), Kirsten (Paul), Kari (Bruno) and six grandchildren.
Services will be held in the fall. In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to the National Park Foundation, Met Orchestra Musicians Fund, Community of the Cross Lutheran Church, or consider participating in the virtual Pancreatic Cancer Walk for Research lustgarten.org/walk-for-research/