Kenneth Chia is currently a lecturer at Universiti Malaysia Sabah, at Fakulti Kemanusiaan, Warisan dan Seni, showing students his unique way of teaching the arts and joys of music. He was born in New York City in 1975, the son of Sabahan parents, and moved to Kota Kinabalu in 2013 to explore Asia and spread the art of the flute in Malaysia. He first started playing flute at age 7 under Joseph Romano at the Brooklyn Conservatory of Music. He then studied under Lauren-Ann Maurer in private studies up until he finished high school It was under her he was introduced to Julius Baker, and began studies with Baker at Carnegie Mellon University up until his retirement. Kenneth then finished his undergraduate studies at Carnegie Mellon University with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Flute Performance in 1997, finishing his degree under Thomas Robertello. He later continued studies under Robertello at Indiana University Bloomington, and earned his Master’s Degree in Music in Flute Performance in 2000.
Throughout his career, Kenneth Chia taught private flute lessons in the New York City area, throughout the years evolving a strong flute curriculum that developed students who gained great technical proficiency, sight-reading ability and musicality. He also established a small career in conducting youth Orchestras, and was Assistant Conductor of the Children’s Orchestra Society of NY between 2000 and 2007, and also was an occasional guest conductor of the Youth Orchestra of the Chinese Youth Corp of New York, including a full concert performance at Alice Tully Hall in Lincoln Center in 2011.
Today, Kenneth Chia is a proud member of the Jesselton Philharmonic Orchestra, as a flutist and guest conductor, and is thankful to JPO for welcoming him to the Sabahan classical music community!