Sean Kierman was born in Portland, Oregon, educated in China, Pakistan, India and the United States of America, completing his BA at Antioch University in Ohio, USA. He pursued post-graduate studies at Wits University from 1966 – 67, whilst playing French horn with the SABC Symphony Orchestra and later moved to the Durban Symphony Orchestra before furthering his studies in politics and psychology at the University of the Orange Free State. He was a central figure in the establishment of the Free State Instrumental Programme and the OFS Symphony Orchestra. In 1979, he took up a lecturing position at the University of Port Elizabeth, where he initiated the brass studies programme and expanded it to one of the largest and most successful brass practices in the country by the time of his departure to Cape Town in 1987. He was appointed as senior lecturer at the South African College of Music, University of Cape Town in July 1987 where he was the convener of brass studies, building up an impressive studio of brass students during his tenure. He also lectured in acoustics and conducted the University of Cape Town Wind Symphony until his retirement in December 2007.
Sean is a committee member and the conductor of the semi-professional symphonic wind ensemble, Windworx, established in 2005, and has conducted this ensemble in numerous performances throughout the Western Cape. He was conductor of the Cape Philharmonic Youth Wind Ensemble from 2004 – 2014 , has been conductor and clinician at numerous South African National Youth Orchestra Courses and has been invited to coach and lecture for community music organisations throughout the Western and Eastern Cape. He is past-president and currently a committee member of the South African Horn Society and received the prestigious Punto award, in recognition of his distinguished contributions and service to the art of horn playing and teaching, from the International Horn Society at the 38th International Horn Symposium in 2006. His current teaching activities include teaching brass students at the University of the Western Cape Centre for the Performing Arts, instructing prospective Bandmasters as well as brass students enrolled in the Certificate Programme, Higher Certificate, Diploma and Degree courses at the Music Department, Stellenbosch and he trains and conducts the University of Stellenbosch Brass Ensemble. In 2014, he was awarded the prestigious Parnussus award by the Music Department, Stellenbosch University, in recognition of his contribution to brass pedagogy in South Africa.