Jed Wentz


Born: July 1, 1960
Jed Wentz began his career as a virtuoso flutist but gradually turned to conducting. He founded the early music ensemble Musica ad Rhenum (Music on the Rhine) and has appeared as soloist or conductor with them in numerous concerts throughout the world. Wentz has hardly abandoned the flute though -- or its early music counterparts like the traverso -- but he has, since the 1990s, focused more on the conducting side of his career and devoted much time as well to the understanding and implementation of historically informed music practices. He is on the faculty of the Amsterdam Conservatory where he teaches traverso and is a frequent lecturer at London's Royal Academy of Music. As a soloist and conductor Wentz has made well over 20 recordings for a variety of labels, including Vanguard Classics, Brilliant Classics, and Challenge Classics. Among the most critically acclaimed are his sets of complete flute sonatas by J.S. Bach and Locatelli, both on Vanguard Classics.

Jed Wentz was born in New Brighton, PA, on July 1, 1960. He enrolled at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music where he studied flute, both modern and early models, with Robert Willoughby and Michael Lynn. He continued studies with Barthold Kuijken at the Royal Conservatory of Music in the Hague, where he was awarded a soloist's diploma.

Wentz appeared regularly in the United States and Europe as a soloist and recitalist in the 1980s. His first recordings appeared in the early '90s, and include the aforementioned two-CD set of Bach sonatas, as well as the Concerto Alla Rustica and other concertos by Vivaldi. In 1992 Wentz founded the Holland-based Musica ad Rhenum, some of whose members appeared in those early recordings.

In the years following, both Wentz and his ensemble attracted much attention, regularly performing at the Concertgebouw Amsterdam and other major venues in Holland, as well as at many European festivals and numerous locales in the United States. In 1995 the Fondazione Cini Venetia awarded Wentz a prize for the best recording of Italian music for his Locatelli sonatas disc. During the 1990s Wentz also busied himself writing: he authored a series of scholarly articles examining eighteenth century performance practices. In the new century he remained active as a conductor and soloist, as well as a teacher. Among his most later recordings is the 2006 release on Brilliant Classics of the complete flute sonatas of Michel Blavet.