Classical guitarist Jon Mendle has performed around the country since his Carnegie Hall debut at age 19 and has drawn widespread praise for his virtuosity and musicianship. Soundboard magazine called his debut album L’Infidele “a beautiful disc.” Yo-Yo Ma, who in 2010 invited Jon to join him and the Silk Road Ensemble on a 10-concert tour, calls Jon "a beautiful talent and a sensitive musician," adding, “It is a joy to play with him!"
Based in San Francisco, Jon has performed throughout the United States, as well as in Canada and Europe. Highlights include solo recitals at the 2015 Loyola-Marymount University Guitar Festival, the 2014 Guitar Foundation of America annual convention, and for presenters such as San Francisco Performances and guitar societies up and down the west coast. On tour with Yo-Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble, Jon performed at the Tanglewood and Ravinia summer music festivals as well as at Detroit’s Orchestra Hall and other major venues.
Jon’s debut recording L’Infidele, which includes transcriptions of 18th century lute and keyboard music, received critical acclaim following its 2011 release by In A Circle Records. The Huffington Post described the album as “stunning and textured,” while Northwest Reverb praised Jon’s “incredible artistry and deep musicianship.” Soundboard wrote, “Mendle’s playing is a wonder.”
A committed chamber musician, Jon is a member of the San Francisco Guitar Quartet. As a teacher, Jon is an Adjunct Professor of guitar at Pacific Union College in Angwin, Calif., and maintains a private studio.
Jon completed his graduate studies at the San Francisco Conservatory under the tutelage of Latin Grammy winner Sergio Assad. He also received his undergraduate degree from the Conservatory, studying under Lawrence Ferrara, Marc Teicholz, David Tanenbaum, and Dusan Bogdanovic. His first teacher was Matthew Grasso.
Jon performs primarily on 2 instruments - a 19th Century style "Heptacorde" (seven-string guitar) built by Michael Thames (2015), and an 11-string Archguitar built by Alan Perlman (2007). Jon often performs on the Heptacorde in period dress.
Jon uses the Heptacorde for 19th century guitar music from the late Classical and Early Romantic eras, which is a more recent area of interest to him. He is especially interested in obscure guitar music from the 19th century, and the compositions of historical Heptacorde players Napoleon Coste and Soffren Degen. Other composers currently in Jon's 19th Century repertoire include Antoine de Lhoyer, Giulio Regondi, and Johann Kaspar Mertz, among others. Soon to be included in Jon's repertoire will be works by Feliks Horetzky and Leonard Schulz.
The 11-string Archguitar is a hybrid of early and modern guitars, making it ideal to play a wide range of early music as well as certain modern and impressionist works. Jon’s repertoire on this instrument includes music from Elizabethan England, baroque lute and keyboard transcriptions, and certain impressionist and modern works. Jon has arranged many pieces for the Archguitar, and recently collaborated with Southern California based composer Garry Eister, who composed 2 pieces for the Archguitar.
In addition, Jon composes music for Archguitar and traditional classical guitar. His composition "Enchantment" is published by Los Angeles Classical Guitars and available for purchase through their website (http://www.lacg.net).