Miles M. Ishigaki began playing the clarinet at the age of 10 in his home town Honolulu, Hawaii. Later, he moved to Norman, Oklahoma, where he earned his Doctorate of Musical Arts in clarinet performance. Ishigaki is Professor of Music at California State University, Fresno (CSUF), where he has taught applied clarinet, chamber music, music theory, and music appreciation since 1987; as well as being the director of the university clarinet choir. Since 1989, he has served as state chair for the National Association of College Wind and Percussion Instructors. His gifted college and pre-college single-reed students have won awards in international clarinet competitions, and have been participants in prestigious regional and national honor wind ensemble festivals. In addition, students from his studio have received numerous prestigious academic awards including the Ronald E. McNair Doctoral grant, President's Equity Scholar, Sally Cassanova Doctoral grant, Stanford University internship, Fulbright Scholarship, CSUF President's-Rodman Scholarship, CSUF President's-Rodman Graduate Fellowship, University of Oklahoma Graduate Fellowship and UCLA Doctoral Fellowship.
Ishigaki has taken part in many performances with such groups as the Fresno Philharmonic, Oklahoma Symphony, Fresno Lyric Opera, Orpheus Chamber Ensemble, Fort Collins Symphony and the Greeley Philharmonic. His enthusiasm for the solo and chamber repertoire of the clarinet has resulted in his giving of numerous concerts in the United States, England, Mexico, and Japan; being a guest soloist and lecturer at the Oklahoma Clarinet Symposium; and directing special arts projects for the CSU Summer Arts Program. He also shares his musical talents through performances for community organizations such as the American Red Cross, Valley Children's Hospital, Friends of the Fresno Public Library Series, the Central California Nikkei Foundation and the Japanese American Citizen's League.
Ishigaki has studied clarinet with David Etheridge, David Harman, Loren Bartlett and Stanley Shimada; who are all distinguished teachers that have been closely aligned with prominent clarinetists of the United States such as Stanley Hasty, Himie Voxman, George Waln and William Gower. A lively interest in all aspects of the art of performance is a quality that Dr. Ishigaki brings to his research projects that include Inspired Accidents: The Interaction of Intuition and Analysis in Teaching Music Performance; Artistic Performance: Developing an Understanding Between the Art and Science of Practice and Performance; and Stravinsky's Three Pieces for Solo Clarinet: Interpretations by Great Artists. His research documents intimate experiences and insightful views of musical interpretation by renowned clarinetists such as Larry Combs, Stanley Hasty, George Silfies, Leon Russianoff, Guy Deplus, Anton Stalder, Alan Hacker, Teruaki Matsushiro and Chun-Xiao Tao. Ishigaki's collaborative research with Dr. Michael Rogers, an author and expert on music theory pedagogy, highlights the relevance of music theory and music performance.
The founder of the West Coast Clarinet Congress, Ishigaki is an active entrepreneur serving as COO of I&M, Inc., a company that specializes in sustainable technology water, housing, and energy. A 2013 Provost's Teaching Award in Technology from Fresno State and a 2006 Honorary Alumnus of the University of Northern Colorado are awards he has received.