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Meet Our Conductor

Dr. J. Ian Nie was born in China but trained in the USA.  Ian has diverse interests in music.  He trained as a classical pianist and has performed in Europe, China, and the USA.  He is also able to lead orchestras, choirs, and has been a music director for operas and musicals.  Ian studied with Jack Roberts at University of North Texas, Leo Steffens at University of Wisconsin, and for a short period in Italy during his New York University years, where he received his PhD in 2003.  His studies with Orazio Frugoni in the late ’70s prepared him for the repertoire and technical proficiencies he would need for performing and teaching.  Ian has taught for 35 years at Beloit College.  He owns and operates Maple Tree Recording Studio and has incorporated an entrepreneurship component to his music technology classes.  In 2012 he founded Turtle Creek Chamber Orchestra.


Ian is passionate about teaching and helping young people learn about and understand all types of music, and the world around them.  He is an excellent coach and collaborative pianist, and supports all forms of art in the community.  He is still an active recitalist and guest artist, having recently conducted Beethoven's Egmont Overture with the Beloit Janesville Symphony Orchestra, and played as part of  Dueling Pianos  with Bill Cunningham.  In his free time he enjoys spending time with his lovely wife and their beloved pets.
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