Jed Distler

The unexpected and surprising twists and turns of Jed Distler’s radio shows draw upon his long experience as a composer, pianist, reviewer, voracious listener, and all-around keyboard maven.

Jed’s love affair with radio started back in the 1960s during the golden age of free form programming. At 14 he unexpectedly filled in for an absent host at a local college station. During the 1990s, Jed frequently appeared as a guest on WFMU and WNYC to play and talk about music. For New York Public Radio’s Q2, Jed helped launch the keyboard music show Hammered!, where he was a guest programmer and sometime host from 2010 to 2014. In 2015 The Classical Network invited Jed to be their first Artist-in-Residence, and host for Between the Keys, a weekly program that airs Fridays at 3:00 PM, with the rebroadcast Saturdays at 6:00 PM. The shows can be heard live on line, and as archived webcasts here. In 2017 Between the Keys won the prestigious ASCAP Deems Taylor/ Virgil Thomson Award for excellence in broadcasting.

As a lecturer, Jed’s illustrated talks about great pianists of the past draw upon his own extensive collection of historic recordings, and offer insights on performance styles, while shattering more than a few myths in the process. His programs cover topics such as What Is Romantic Pianism?, Glenn Gould Unspliced, A Stress-Free Guide to Building a Piano Library, and Composers at the Keyboard: A Fresh Look at an Old Tradition. Special programs can be adapted to address specific composers, performers, genres, eras, and just about any topic. A highly sought-after curator and consultant, Jed has programmed an eclectic variety of keyboard festivals, composer portraits, and day long marathons in the New York Area

As Artistic Director of ComposersCollaborative, Inc., Jed directed the performance and discussion series Solo Flights, which showcased a broad spectrum of today's music by established and emerging performers and composers. He conceived and programmed 100 Portraits for Virgil, the first complete performance of the Virgil Thomson piano portraits in a day long, multimedia festival featuring thirty six performers, co-produced with The New School. With radio producer and concert presenter Jim Luce, Jed organized the 2005 Tsunami Fund Raiser at Faust Harrison Pianos and a four day Debussy 150th anniversary festival held in downtown Manhattan in 2012. To usher in 2015’s Make Music New York, Jed organized and curated a 24-hour marathon performance of the late Arthur Jarvinen’s Serious Immobilities – 840 Variations for solo piano on Satie’s “Vexations” in tandem with Randall Woolf’s “Spineless Dog.” Jed also curated Symphony Space’s monthly piano recital series during its two year run.

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