Jun Qian

Jun Qian

Chinese-born American clarinetist Dr. Jun Qian joined the music faculty at Baylor University in 2012, when he was also appointed principal clarinetist of the Waco Symphony. Qian won first prize in the International Clarinet Association’s Orchestral Excerpts Competition and third prize in its Young Artist Solo Competition in 1997 - the first artist in the history of the ICA to receive prizes in both competitions in the same year. He also took second prize in the Texas Young Artists’ Competition and first prize in the Baylor Symphony Orchestra Concerto Competition.

Prior to his appointment at Baylor, Qian was the principal clarinetist of the Shanghai Philharmonic Orchestra and served as the clarinet professor at St. Olaf College in Minnesota.  He has held other faculty appointments at Nazareth College, Houghton College, New York State University at Fredonia, Eastman School of Music (music theory), Shanghai Conservatory of Music (chamber music) and the Round Top International Music Festival.

Jun Qian made his Carnegie Hall debut in 2001, performing Weber’s Clarinet Concerto No. 1 with the Asian American Elite Orchestra. Qian has appeared as a concerto soloist with the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra, the Eastman Wind Ensemble, the Shanghai Philharmonic, the Xiamen Philharmonic, the Pueblo (CO) Symphony Orchestra, the Baylor Symphony Orchestra, the Eastman Chamber Orchestra and the Shengyang Opera Orchestra. He was the first to introduce Chinese audiences to several Western clarinet solos in full orchestral versions, among these Donato Lovreglio’s La Traviata Fantasy and the concertos of Aaron Copland and Malcolm Arnold. National and international appearances as principal and guest principal clarinetist include the Eastman Wind Ensemble’s tours of Asia in 2000 and 2004, the Central Wisconsin Symphony, the North Carolina Festival Orchestra’s European tour, the Kent-Blossom Music Festival (student guest principal with The Cleveland Orchestra), the National Orchestra Institute (USA), the American Wind Symphony, and the Binghamton Philharmonic.

Qian was a featured performer at the Kyoto International Performing Arts Festival in Japan, the Shanghai Time Square Concert Series in China, the Taipei National Concert Hall Recital Series in Taiwan, the Selmer Paris Concert Series in France, the College Music Society International Conference in South Korea, and the International Clarinet Association’s ClarinetFest conferences in Los Angeles, Orlando in US, and Assisi, Italy.  His chamber music recitals have been heard on National Public Radio’s “Performance Today” (US) with the Grammy Award-winning Ying Quartet and the Round Top Festival Institute’s faculty chamber groups.  

Dr. Qian’s activities as a teacher include master classes throughout China, Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan, Canada, and the United States.  His college students won both Grand Prizes in the 2015 and 2016 International Clarinet Association Orchestral Excerpts Competitions and have been selected for study at major festivals and graduate schools. His pre-college students have won many honors and prizes as well, including the Minnesota Orchestra’s concerto competition, first chair in the Texas Music Educators Association’s 6A ALL-STATE Symphonic Band, and featured young soloist on NPR’s “From the Top” radio show. Dr. Qian is the founding director of the Baylor Clarinet Choir, Baylor Clarinet Festival, Virtuosi Chamber Winds, and the Amadeus Youth Clarinet Ensemble.

As a recording artist, Qian served as music producer and soloist for Steven Laitz’s book, The Complete Musician (second edition), published by Oxford University Press. His CD recording, Première Rhapsodie (1998) and DVD, Playing the Clarinet (2004) were released under the Nanjing Shine Horn label in China.

In addition to performing the standard clarinet repertoire, Dr. Qian also collects, performs, records, and commissions new music for clarinet influenced by Chinese Culture and Literature (East Meets West Recording Project). The commissioned works, written by well-known composers such as Chen Yi, Bright Sheng, Justin Merritt and Zhou Long, explore the confluence of Chinese cultural elements and Western art music. Collectively, they have gleaned an impressive list of international accolades and accomplishments. The release of his first recording in the U.S,  East Meets West – Clarinet Music by Chinese Composers (Albany Records, Troy1377, 2012) represents the culmination of the first major phase of this work. The International Clarinet Association's prestige "Clarinet" magazine describes his second recording of the series, East Meets West II (Albany Records, Troy 1528), as showcasing "beautifully executed performances of new and important music linking two fertile musical cultures. His technique is very fine, and his tonal flexibility simulating the Chinese wind instrument sound world is always first rate."  The third recording series, West Meets East ( Albany Records, Troy 1681) was reviewed by the same magazine as " (The CD) offers many interesting moments, showcases his superb ability as a musician."

Jun Qian holds the Bachelor of Music degree in Clarinet Performance from Baylor University, where he was a student of Richard Shanley. From the Eastman School of Music, he holds the Master of Music degree in Clarinet Performance, a Performer's Certificate, and the Doctor of Musical Arts degree. He studied there with Kenneth Grant, and as the last private student of Stanley Hasty.