Born in Jiangsu in 1979, Zhang began to study orchestra conducting with Professor Zhang Mei at the Shanghai Music Conservatory in 1996. In 1998, with top honor in both conducting and piano, he was admitted into the Universitaet für Musik und Darstellende Kunst Wien where he studied with the renowned conductor, Professor Uros Lajovic, and the pianists, Professor David Lively and J.G. Jiracek, and in 2003, he obtained his degree in both piano and conducting.
During his stay in Vienna, Zhang Liang conducted Il Segreto di Susanna and paved the way for his entry into the master class of Professor Konrad Leitner, music coach of the Wienerstaatsoper. During this period he built a wide-ranging repertoire that included Die Zauberflöte, Fidelio, Die Fledermaus, Der Freischuetz, Carmen, and The Marriage of Figaro. Zhang was also active in the capacity of a pianist.
Zhang Liang was appointed as a conductor of the Shanghai Opera House at the end of 2003. From 2008 Zhang Liang was appointed as a resident conductor of the Shanghai Philharmonic Orchestra. From September 2009 he is appointed as Conductor in Residence of Shanghai Symphonic Orchestra.
Zhang Liang is noted for his dazzling technique and idiomatic interpretation, well recognized for his penetrating reading of Mahler and Richard Strauss.