Music Director Bio

Jin Zhang, Music Director

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Jin Zhang is the Music Director of the Vancouver Philharmonic Orchestra, a position he has held since 2007. Born in Beijing China, he received his first musical education at the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing. He studied at Toho Gakuen School of Music in Tokyo, Japan where he studied conducting with Morihiro Okabe, and took master classes with Kazuyoshi Akiyama and Seiji Ozawa.

Since coming to Canada in 1990, Jin has quickly become known as a conductor and composer who actively promotes the appreciation of and education in symphonic orchestral music and, no less, the combining of Eastern and Western musical expressions.

Jin Zhang is an Associate Composer of Canadian Music Centre. He presently holds the position of Music Director and Conductor of the Vancouver Philharmonic Orchestra, the New Westminster Symphony Orchestra and the Vancouver Youth Symphony Intermediate Orchestra. He also conducts Vancouver Inter Culture Orchestra. He is an artistic director of VBCM production and Co-Chair of Chinese Music Teachers of Canada. Recently, he was appointed as a guest professor in Yunnan Wenhua Conservatory for Arts in China.

Jin Zhang is a multiple recipient of commissioning grants from the Canada Council for the Arts, and has composed for many ensembles, TV productions, and CD recordings. Many of his compositions and arrangements have been played by professional and community groups including the Calgary Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra, the Victoria Symphony Orchestra and the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra. Some of his works have been broadcast by BBC, CBC, VTV and other networks. In 2008, Jin released a recording of his compositions “Tracing”. The production was supported by Canada Council for the Arts, and is being distributed by the Canadian Music Centre. His second recording was released in China in 2010. Under the aegis of the Pangaea Arts Society, he was granted major Olympic arts funding for the creation of a new work.

In 2006, Jin was selected by the Canadian Music Centre to be part of their online initiative, “Composer Portraits – Influences of Many Musics”. The project focused on Canadian composers who have come to Canada from other countries, highlighting their valuable contributions to Canadian music. In 2004, Jin Zhang was honoured by the City of New Westminster for ten years of distinguished service to the New Westminster Symphony Orchestra and the City. In 2001, the film he composed music for – “Nu Shu – A Hidden Language of Women in China” – received the Audience Award and Best Documentary at the Festival Internazionale Cinema Delle Donne in Torino, Italy. He has also received an Artistic Achievement Awards issued by Vancouver Chinese Culture Centre.