Jacob Nissly will join The Cleveland Orchestra at the beginning of the 2011-12 season as the new Principal Percussionist, and will hold the Margaret Allen Ireland Endowed Chair. Mr. Nissly became Principal Percussionist of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra during the 2009-10 season and has served in that post for the 2010-11 season. Previously, he was a member of the New World Symphony in Miami Beach for two seasons, performing under the direction of Michael Tilson Thomas. He has performed with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Civic Orchestra of Chicago, Des Moines Metro Opera, Houston Symphony Orchestra, Kansas City Symphony, Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra, Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, and the Toledo Symphony Orchestra. He also spent two summers playing with the Verbier Festival Orchestra in Verbier, Switzerland, and two summers with the Pacific Music Festival in Sapporo, Japan. In addition, he has performed at the Chautauqua Institute and at the Spoleto USA Festival.
Mr. Nissly holds a bachelor of music and jazz studies degree from Northwestern University, where he studied with Michael Burritt, James Ross, Paul Wertico, and Joel Spencer. He received his master of music degree from the Juilliard School, where he studied with Greg Zuber and Dan Druckman. While at Juilliard, Mr. Nissly co-premiered Roberto Sierra's percussion concerto "Bongo +" with the New Juilliard Ensemble. He began his percussion studies with Woody Smith in Iowa and has also worked extensively with percussionist Michael Werner, Principal Percussionist of the Seattle Symphony. Mr. Nissly was recently appointed to the faculty of the Eastman School of Music as an adjunct professor of percussion.