Di Zhao graduated from Wuhan Conservatory, after which he played at the Hunan Broadcast Orchestra for two years as its principal flutist. In 1984 he became the principal flutist at the National Ensemble Orchestra of China in Beijing, a post that he held until 1990 when he came to the United States to pursue his Master’s Degree at Indiana University. In 1992 he attended West Iowa Technical College, the noted repair school, where he enrolled in the program of Band Instrument repair.
At the end of 1992, Mr. Zhao was hired to work for Verne Q. Powell Flutes, beginning his nearly 20-year flute making career. During his 13 years at Powell, Mr. Zhao mastered all aspects of flute production, working as a padder, headjoint maker, stringer, and body maker. In 2002, he was promoted to Powell's Vice President of Quality.
Since working at Powell, Mr. Zhao has also served as Vice President and General Manager at William S. Haynes Flutes. He has worked as a consultant for many other companies, perhaps most notably helping Sonare and Haynes establish factories in China, all the while continuing to produce excellent high-quality flutes.
Now Mr. Zhao has started his own flute business and has built a flute factory in China, working to produce the best quality flutes in China for the next generation. Di Zhao's flutes are played by hundreds of famous flutists around the world.
Shan Liu has taught flute for the past 30 years. She earned her Bachelor’s degree in music at Wuhan Conservatory and her Master’s degree in flute performance at Indiana University. After receiving her Bachelor’s Degree, she played for the Central Philharmonic of China in Beijing for over 6 years before coming to the United States. While earning her Master’s degree, she played in the Southwest Michigan and Elkhart Orchestras, also teaching at St. Mary's College and Indiana University.
After receiving her Master's degree, she earned her Artist Diploma in Music with Mr. Donald Peck, the principal flutist of the Chicago Symphony. Today, Shan Liu is a faculty member at Indian Hill Music School and runs a very successful private studio.