A Des Moines native, Stephen Dorff studied cello with longtime Drake University professor emeritus and former Des Moines Symphony principal cellist, John Ehrlich. Stephen went on to receive his BM and MM in cello performance from the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, where his primary teachers were Peter Stumpf, Janos Starker, and Benjamin Karp. He also received extensive chamber music instruction from members of the Pacifica Quartet. While at Indiana, Stephen served as a section cellist with the Terre Haute Symphony and performed regularly with the Owensboro Symphony, Carmel Symphony, and Columbus Indiana Philharmonic.
In addition to his orchestral experience, Stephen has appeared in concerts and recitals throughout the United States. He has performed at the Brevard Music Center and Green Mountain Chamber Music Festival and has performed the premiere of several new compositions at the Midwest Composers Symposium.
Stephen is currently an adjunct cello faculty member at Central College in Pella and a member of the Des Moines Symphony. He has also performed with Orchestra Iowa and the Ottumwa Symphony. Stephen plays on a 1994 cello made by Christopher Dungey.
Outside of music, Stephen works as an actuary at Nationwide Insurance. In his free time, he enjoys reading, swimming, and traveling.