Ian was born in Wolverhampton and began cello lessons at school with Kathrin Michaelis. He then studied for 4 years at the Birmingham School of Music with Antonia Butler followed by Post Graduate study at the Hochschule für Musik in Cologne under Siegfried Palm.
He joined the Academy of the BBC in 1975 and moved to the CBSO in 1977. As well as his orchestral playing, Ian plays regularly with various chamber music groups and has given recitals with the pianist Phillip Henderson. He is married (his wife is also a cellist) with 2 grown up children and in his spare time enjoys dinghy sailing (badly, but always trying to get better!).
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