The American conductor, Louis Lane, studied composition with Kennan at the University of Texas (B. Music, 1943). After three years in the field Artillery during World War II, he continued his studies: Martiml at the Berkshire Music Center in Tanglewood (summer, 1946), and Rogers at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York (M. Music, 1947). He also took a course in opera with Sarah Caldwell (1950).
After winning nationwide competition, Louis Lane became in 1947 the Apprentice Conductor to George Szell and The Cleveland Orchestra. Subsequently he was assistant conductor (1956-1960), associate conductor (1960-1970), and resident conductor (1970-1973) there. He also was co-director of the Blossom Festival School (1969-1973). He served as music director of the Akron (Ohio) Symphony Orchestra (1959-1983) and of the Lake Erie Opera Theatre (1964-1972). In 1973 he became principal guest conductor of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra, and later held various positions with it until 1978. From 1977 to 1983 he was co-conductor of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra; then was its principal guest conductor (1983-1988). He also was principal guest conductor (1982-1983) and principal conductor (1984-1985) of the National Symphony Orchestra of the South African Broadcasting Corporation in Johannesburg.
Since his Canadian debut in 1960 at the Vancouver Festival (with Glenn Gould), Louis Lane has appeared as guest conductor with many of the major orchestras of North and South America, Europe and Africa. Under the auspices of the U.S. State Department's Cultural Exchange Program, he has conducted concerts of The Cleveland Orchestra in the Soviet Union and Austria, and has appeared with the SODRE Orchestra of Montevideo in Uruguay.
Louis Lane was adjunct professor at the University of Akron (1969-1983), visiting professor at the University of Cincinnati (1973-1975). He was appointed to Cleveland Institute of Music Faculty in 1981, and from 1982 has been Artistic Advisor and Conductor at the Cleveland Institute of Music. From 1995 to 1998 he was also Director of Orchestral Studies at Oberlin College.
During the quarter century of his association with The Cleveland Orchestra, Louis Lane became known for his imaginative programming and the wide range of his repertory. This has been recognized by several notable awards, including the Mahler Medal of the Bruckner Society of America in 1971 for his performances of works by Bruckner and Gustav Mahler, and the Alice M. Ditson Prize of Columbia University in 1972 for his numerous performances and recordings of contemporary American music. In 1979 he was named Chevalier de l'Ordre et des Lettres of France by the French Minister of Culture, acknowledging his sympathetic advocacy of French orchestral music.