As a pianist-composer, singer-songwriter, clarinettist and music educator, Ian Chan is currently pursuing his graduate studies at York University as a Master of Education candidate. Previously, he completed a bachelor's degree in music composition with a second major in human geography with honours at the University of Toronto, from which he received Faculty of Artists' Scholarship, Arthur Plettner Scholarship and Dr. Haberman Herbert Memorial Award. Over the years, he has been coached by notable Canadian artists such as Larysa Kuzmenko, Saman Shahi, Matthew Emery and Kevin Lau for composition; Younggun Kim, Eldon Ng and Langning Liu for piano, as well as Sahar Azar for clarinet. The list of ensembles that he has worked with over the decade includes but is not limited to Surround Sound A Cappella Choir (semi-finalist of International Championship of Collegiate A Cappella), Concreamus Chamber Choir, Voces Boreales Vocal Octet (VB8), Gey Teal Girls’ Choir, Grenadier String Quartet, Markham Wesley Symphony Orchestra and Canadian Sinfonietta.
On the other hand, he has worked at Tone Labs Music Academy as an instructor offering piano and theory lessons in classical, jazz and pop styles, besides co-directing student bands as well as an a cappella choir (Vox Club). Along with 3 of his colleagues, he led a singer-songwriter team to win the People Choice Award and Most Popular Song Award at the 16th Canadian Chinese Song Writer’s Quest (SQ16) hosted by Fairchild Media Group in 2023. With Redkey, a local pop band based in Toronto, he was selected to be a keyboardist collaborating with renowned Hong Kong singers Terence Siufay and J. Arie in Time Machine Charity Concert hosted by TCCSA in 2023.
Before graduating from Unionville High School's specialized Arts Unionville piano program in 2019, he won numerous Canadian piano competitions as a soloist and in duet/concerto groups, such as Kiwanis Music Festival, Toronto International Piano Competition, North York Music Festival, Wishing Well Lions Club Music Festival and Yip's Music Festival. He was a provincial finalist of the piano diploma class of the Ontario Music Festivals Association (OMFA) in 2017. In the same year, he completed his ARCT in Piano Performance at the Royal Conservatory of Music, before subsequently acquiring his level 8 practical clarinet certificate from the same institute in 2018.
Having a deep Protestant faith, he has also served as an audio/video producer, composer, arranger, singer-songwriter and keyboardist at his home church (Markham Peoples Community Church) for almost a decade, with an appointment of interim worship ministry lead from 2022 to 2023. He also collaborates with bands from other churches such as Richmond Hill Free Methodist Church and Zion Alliance Church. His music is used in retreat camps, varsity shows, commercials, theatre productions and films created by these organisations.
His teaching style is straightforward, vivid and empowering based on his lifelong goal to cultivate public admiration for the art of music as a powerful catalyst of humans' physical, mental and spiritual growth. As a person of colour who witnesses various discrimination incidents against underprivileged individuals, he also aims to promote civil ethics and social justice, with music as a universal language which should be made accessible to people of all backgrounds and bring them together in harmony.
His music is currently available on various social media sites (e.g. Facebook, Instagram) and music streaming platforms (e.g. YouTube, SoundCloud) under the pseudonym “Ian Mc King I”. He can also be reached via email ([email protected]
). Inquiries for commission, collaboration and consultation are always welcome.