Kenneth Chia resting at the Sabah Art Gallery

Kenneth Chia resting at the Sabah Art Gallery

KENNETH CHIA IS A FREELANCE FLUTE ARTIST-LECTURER AND EXPERIENCED YOUTH ORCHESTRA CONDUCTOR CURRENTLY RESIDING IN KOTA KINABALU, MALAYSIA, .   

BORN IN 1975 TO PARENTS ROBIN AND ROSALIND CHIA IN NEW YORK CITY, KENNETH FIRST STARTED PIANO LESSONS IN THE FLUSHING BRANCH OF THE BROOKLYN CONSERVATORY OF MUSIC AT THE AGE OF 4, UNDER GILBERT MORA.   INSPIRED BY HIS UNCLE YEN LIAM LEE PLAYING THE FLUTE WHILE VISITING THE CHIA FAMILY HOME, KENNETH WANTED TO ALSO LEARN THIS FASCINATING INSTRUMENT.  AT THE AGE OF 9, HE GOT HIS WISH, BEGINNING LESSONS AT THE SAME BROOKLYN CONSERVATORY SCHOOL UNDER JOSEPH ROMANO.    

HE CONTINUED TO TAKE LESSONS IN BOTH PIANO AND FLUTE UNTIL AGE 13, WHEN HE DECIDED TO DEDICATE HIMSELF SOLELY TO THE FLUTE.   ALSO AT THIS AGE, HE BEGAN STUDIES WITH LAUREL-ANN MAURER.  MS. MAURER ALSO INTRODUCED HIM TO HER TEACHER, THE GREAT JULIUS BAKER, AND HE ALSO TOOK PRIVATE LESSONS FROM HIM, MAKING THE ARDUOUS 90 MINUTE TRIP EACH WEEK TO HIS BREWSTER, NEW YORK HOME.  

A GRADUATE OF THE BRONX HIGH SCHOOL OF SCIENCE WHO WAS PRETTY GOOD WITH COMPUTERS, KENNETH INSTEAD MADE THE CHOICE OF PURSUING MUSIC AS A FLUTE MAJOR. AFTER A BRIEF STINT IN QUEENS COLLEGE, KENNETH TRANSFERRED TO CARNEGIE MELLON UNIVERSITY TO CONTINUE STUDIES WITH JULIUS BAKER.   WHILE AT CMU, KENNETH ALSO STUDIED WITH JEFFREY KHANER, ALBERTO ALMARZA AND THOMAS ROBERTELLO, GRADUATING WITH A BACHELOR OF FINE ARTS DEGREE IN FLUTE PERFORMANCE IN 1998.  HE FOLLOWED THOMAS ROBERTELLO TO GRADUATE STUDIES AT INDIANA UNIVERSITY - BLOOMINGTON, COMPLETING A MASTER OF MUSIC DEGREE IN FLUTE PERFORMANCE IN 2000, WITH A COGNATE CONCENTRATION IN CONDUCTING.  

WHEN KENNETH RETURNED BACK TO NEW YORK, HE SPENT SOME TIME WORKING AT JEFF WEISSMAN'S FLUTE SHOP AS A REPAIR TECHNICIAN, AND LEARNED MUCH ABOUT THE MECHANICS OF THE FLUTE.   HE ALSO  WORKED AT THE CHILDREN'S ORCHESTRA SOCIETY, OF WHICH HE IS AN ALUMNI, STARTING FIRST AS A SECTIONAL COACH AND FLUTE TEACHER AND THEN LATER ON AS ASSISTANT CONDUCTOR TO MICHAEL DADAP AND HIS COS'S JUNIOR SYMPHONIC ENSEMBLE DIVISION.  KENNETH WAS A GUEST CONDUCTOR FOR THE CYCNY YOUTH ORCHESTRA, GUIDING THEM THROUGH THEIR 2010-2011 SEASON AND CULMINATING IN A SUCCESSFUL CONCERT AT ALICE TULLY HALL IN LINCOLN CENTER. 

HE ALSO DID END UP PUTTING SOME OF THOSE BRONX SCIENCE TECHNICAL SKILLS TO USE, RECENTLY FINISHING A FOUR YEAR STINT AS A NETWORK ADMINISTRATOR FOR A SMALL OUTSOURCED IT COMPANY IN MANHATTAN.  

  

THROUGH IT ALL, KENNETH CHIA HAS MAINTAINED HIS LOVE FOR THE FLUTE AND FLUTE TEACHING, PARTICIPATING IN VARIOUS ORCHESTRA AND CHAMBER MUSIC CONCERTS IN THE NEW YORK CITY AREA.    HE WAS A MEMBER OF LA SONORITÉ, A FLUTE/OBOE/PIANO TRIO ALONG WITH SHIRLEY CHANG AND JOHN HSIANG TU.    HE REGULARLY SUBBED IN WITH THE BROOKLYN SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA, AND IS A FOUNDING MEMBER OF THE JACKSON HEIGHTS ORCHESTRA.   HE WAS THE PROUD TEACHER OF SOME OF THE BEST STUDENTS IN QUEENS AND LONG ISLAND, A FEW OF WHOM ARE PLAYING COLLEGE LEVEL REPERTOIRE BEFORE THEY HAVE EVEN FINISHED HIGH SCHOOL!    HAVING RECENTLY MOVED TO KOTA KINABALU, HE IS NOW LOOKING FORWARD TO NEW MUSIC OPPORTUNITIES IN ASIA, WHERE HE CAN SHARE AND TEACH HIS UNIQUE BRAND OF MUSIC PERFORMANCE TO THIS PART OF THE WORLD.