William Jenks is one of the Pacific Northwest's best-kept secrets. A standout talent from a new generation of classical guitarists, he has recorded four CDs and performed in a broad range of venues around the world, in front of thousands of music lovers. In addition, Jenks has been vital to the arts community of the Portland area, particularly through his foundation of Portland Classic Guitar, a local teaching studio and guitar shop where he also directs an acclaimed concert series.
Jenks' concert career has been notable. He began performing choral music at age six, at one point taking part in an impressive Carnegie Hall performance of The Magnificat, under the world-renowned composer and maestro John Rutter. After learning guitar as a young adult, Jenks was able to showcase a set of talents – singing and playing guitar – rarely seen in combination in the classical world. He would go on to earn great praise for a series of solo concerts in France, Germany, and Italy. He has of course also performed throughout his native Oregon; highlights of his stateside concert career have included performances at the Portland Wine and Arts Festival, the Newport Performing Arts Center, and Cycle Oregon. Jenks provided the inaugural concert for the re-opening of the Elgin Opera (the Elgin Times noted that “he put on a tremendous show”). He has been a guest artist with the local Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra, and was selected to perform in a special reception for Portland Mayor Vera Katz.