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, where he enrolled in the program of Band Instrument repair.