René Frank was among several distinguished faculty members who became well known for their outstanding talent, passion for God and His Word, respect in the local community, and whose works continue to endure. After a tumultuous life in fleeing Germany and spending WWII in Japan, the Franks came to Fort Wayne Bible College in 1951. He immediately set out to earn his master's and doctorate in music, and to affiliate with other composers and musicians, primarily through the National Church Music Fellowship. Through these contacts, his many compositions became known. Premiers of his works were often performed by college performing groups coming to the Fort Wayne Bible College campus. Among them Northwestern University (Evanston), Houghton College, as well as Fort Wayne's own Chorale. Other premiers were given by Indiana University (Bloomington), Concordia College (Milwaulkee) and Indiana Central College (now the University of Indianapolis).
Ira Gerig often said that the strongest of all René's talents was the setting of scripture to music. It was as if this was the way the text was to be sung.
While at the college Dr. Frank taught music and art courses, was chair of the department (although he never thought of himself as an administrator and wanted others to do this), and gave piano lessons (with the famous box of tissues). He took a sincere and deep interest in students academically, personally and spiritually and was always looking for ways to help them succeed through Music Club, field trips and personal encouragement.
Of the many works by Dr. Frank, a choral piece that is outstanding is Give Unto The Lord the Glory from Psalm of Praise and Judgement. Other of his works can be heard by going to the Archive and searching by René Frank.
Dr. Paul Robbins has kindly written a blog about his many memories of this beloved man. To read this blog click on Fruit From The Vine.