Ian McKinnell was born in England and moved to South Pasadena at age 4. Ian started the cello in the public schools and studied with Joseph DiTullio (Louise DiTullio's father) and Gabor Rejto. He has a B.M. in cello performance from Chapman University and a M.M. from University of Southern California. McKinnell has been a member of Pacific Symphony since 1979 and is also Assistant Personnel Manager. He is dedicated to music education, which includes having a large private studio, conducting two string and one full orchestras at El Dorado High School, and Pacific Symphony's Class Act program. His wife Laurie is an elementary music teacher, his daughter Lesley is a singer and musical theater major, and his son Andrew is a clarinetist.