- DMA, Trombone Performance, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
- M.M., Trombone Performance, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
- B.M., Music Education, Western Michigan University
Chris Nigrelli, professor of music, joined Lenoir-Rhyne in 1997. He teaches music history and appreciation, brass ensemble, jazz ensemble, world music and applied brass lessons on trombone and euphonium. He served as coordinator of the music program from 2008 to 2013 and returned to that role in 2018. Since 2013, Nigrelli has led the summer youth music camps. In addition, he regularly conducts jazz and concert band clinics and brass master classes throughout the region.
Nigrelli has served in leadership roles for Western Piedmont Symphony and Harper School of Performing Arts and a member-at-large for North Carolina Bandmasters jazz section. He was the principal trombonist in the Western Piedmont Symphony for nearly 20 years. During the 2021-2022 academic year, Nigrelli is serving as the interim director of bands and is the co-conductor of the wind symphony.