Music Director and Conductor
Dr. Mark Liu began teaching in 2002 as a member of the Indian Prairie School District music staff. During his tenure in the district, the Indian Prairie Educational Foundation has numerously recognized him as a Most Influential Educator. Additionally, he has been awarded Outstanding Educator by Boston College, Illinois Institute of Technology, and Western Illinois University. Dr. Liu received Bachelor of Arts in Music education from Wheaton College (2001), Master of Music with orchestral conducting emphasis from Northwestern University (2006), Master of Arts in educational leadership from Aurora University (2008), and Doctor of Musical Arts in music education from Boston University (2016), with a quantitative research focus on the impact of psychological needs fulfillment and music motivation.
Dr. Liu was the Wheaton College Conservatory of Music Concerto Competition winner, and he performed the Elgar Cello Concerto with the conservatory’s symphony orchestra in 2001. His conducting mentors include Dan Sommerville (Wheaton College), Victor Yampolsky (Northwestern University), Donald Schleicher (University of Illinois), and Ho Chung Yeh (former assistant conductor of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra).
Prior to his current position as the orchestra director at Metea Valley High School, Dr. Liu has served as the symphony orchestra director at Chicago Merit School of Music, Maine East High School, and Waubonsie Valley High School. He has presented at state conferences on string pedagogy and rehearsal methods, and served frequently as honors festival clinician and conductor. He is a member of NAfME (National Association for Music Education), ASTA (American String Teachers Association), and the Conductors Guild. He has served as the ILMEA (Illinois Music Educators Association) District IX Orchestra Chair, and is currently serving as the ILMEA All-State Orchestra chairperson.