Jonathan Shepherd began playing piano at the age of six. Studying under Central Oregon piano teacher Jan Saito, Jonathan focused through his youth on classical technique and repertoire. He performed in many recitals, including a master’s class, a Syllabus graduation recital, and several years of the non-competitive and competitive annual Junior Bach Festivals. Jonathan also completed the highest four levels of the Oregon Music Teacher’s Syllabus program, qualifying him to teach piano under the OMTA.
At the age of seventeen Jonathan began studying music at Central Oregon Community College and changed focus from proficiency at Classical Piano to composition, arrangement, improvisation, and music theory. Jonathan also worked steadily as the accompanist for choirs and voice students, as the musician of Aspen Lakes Resort in Sisters, Oregon, as the worship leader of Sisters Christian Church, and as a private piano instructor. Finally Jonathan graduated from Oregon State University with a Bachelors of Arts degree in music.
Since graduation Jonathan has continued to expand his palette of artistic and musical tastes. With his wife, Jimena, he’s directed for BEAT, CASA, and History Performers. He still teaches privately, and also accompanies and performs across Central Oregon. Jonathan’s gigs now encompass sounds from rock and musical theater to classical and personal compositions. With extensive experience in both the fine arts and popular genres, Jonathan attempts to bring the best of both worlds into each of his compositions, arrangements, and interpretations and plays with stoic drama, abandoned enthusiasm, or a gracefully tender touch on the keys.