Born in London, Jonathan Preiss studied classical and jazz guitar at Leeds College of Music and Trinity College of Music, London. A tremendously versatile guitarist playing classical, acoustic and electric guitars as well as other plucked strings, his performing career has encompassed classical music, jazz, musical theatre, Latin-American music, folk and contemporary chamber music
He has performed and recorded with artists including Aled Jones, David McAlmont, Kathleen Turner, Cerys Matthews, Michael Ball, Tina May, Natalie Williams, Jacqui Tate, Joanna Strand, Joanna MacGregor and Adrian Brendel and Thomas Gould.
West End experience includes Lin-Manuel Miranda’s “In the Heights” and “Zorro the Musical”. Other shows have included "Assassins", “West Side Story” and “Chess”. Other notable performances have ranged from performing Pierre Boulez’ serialist masterpiece “Le Marteau Sans Maître” with contemporary music specialists the Warehouse Ensemble to playing guitars and mandolin in live performances of Howard Shore’s “Lord of the Rings” soundtrack with the London Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by the composer.
Jonathan also has a deep involvement with Brazilian music, and has performed with many highly respected Brazilian singers and instrumentalists from the worlds of samba, bossa nova, choro and Brazilian jazz, including Monica Vasconcelos, Chico Chagas, Henrique Cazes, Dirceu Leite, Rogerio Souza, Leandra Varanda, Adriano Adewale, Bosco de Oliveira, Paraiso School of Samba and Gilberto Gomes. He is also a member of Argentinian tango group the Romano Viazzani Ensemble.
Broadcast credits include BBC Radio 2's "Friday Night Is Music Night" and BBC Radio 3’s “In Tune”; recording credits include projects as diverse as film work including “The Hobbit – An Unexpected Journey”; Aled Jones’ “The Christmas Album”, a duo folk album with BBC Young Tradition award winning accordionist Luke Daniels and two albums with Brazilian group Caratinga.
Jonathan is also a composer and arranger. He has a long association with MD Callum Mcleod, arranging and orchestrating for artists including Michael Ball (2001-) and for Ball & Boe (2016-2020). He also worked as score editor for Erdal Kizalcay (ex-David Bowie)’s orchestral concert/DVD tribute to Turkish singing legend Sezen Aksu (Erdal Kizalcay/Royal Philharmonic Orchestra).
His arrangements have also been performed by artists including Joanna MacGregor, Adrian Brendel and Joanna Strand and his solo guitar compositions “Ten Studies” and “Three Rhapsodies” are published by Berben Edizione.