Dr. Robert Dean holds a philosophy doctorate in Choral Music Education from Florida State University. He studied conducting with Donald Neuen, Joseph Flummerfelt, Rodney Eichenberger and orchestral conducting with George Hurst of the BBC Northern Symphony Orchestra. Dean was the Assistant Conductor of the Oak Ridge Symphony Orchestra while a graduate student under Donald Neuen. From 1999 to 2004 he was conductor of the University Chorale at Radford University where he also taught undergraduate and graduate music education courses. Dean has also conducted the University Chorale and Orchestra and taught graduate level courses in Music Research at Marshall University.
Dr. Dean began conducting at aged eighteen, working with church choirs and groups of singers in undergraduate school. He was Student Conductor for the Chamber Singers under Glenn Draper at UTC. He has, over the years, served as a clinician and consultant for various schools on the male changing voice and choosing appropriate literature. In the 1980s Dean served as chairman of the state literary competitions of the Southeastern Association of Independent Schools while the Director of Piedmont Academy in Monticello, Georgia. He has taught music in public schools in Georgia, Tennessee, Florida, and Massachusetts. He was also vocal coach for recording artist Trisha Yearwood for three years.
Dean began singing at age nine as a member of the Chattanooga Boys Choir under founding director, Stephen Ortlip. During his schooling he was both an instrumentalist (trombone) and a singer. Dean later studied trombone with Dr. William Cramer of Florida State University and Denis Wick of the London Symphony Orchestra. As a professional trombonist he played with the Guildhall Symphony Orchestra in London, the Fulham Symphony Orchestra and with the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra. Dean graduated from Chattanooga High School where he was student under Mr. Jewell Tilson. From 1979 to 1985 he was a member of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Chorus under Robert Shaw.
Dr. Dean currently teaches Music Appreciation at UTC, and considers himself a missionary for music and an advocate for music in the schools. He also is an advocate for interdisciplinary learning, using an across the curriculum approach to teaching Music.