Mark Bentley and Jim Grimm have been playing music together for nearly five years, as a duo and as members of the Kansas City Guitar Quartet. Their public performances outside of the Kansas City area are a rare treat, as they both maintain very active teaching schedules. Mark currently teaches guitar at Park University after having served for 16 years at Missouri Western State College. Jim has been a member of the music faculty at William Jewell College since 1978.
Mark Bentley is a graduate of the Conservatory of Music at the University of Missouri Kansas City. He has had further study with Pepe Romero at his annual masterclasses at Rice University in Houston during the late 1970 and early 1980s. Also, Mr. Bentley has attended the summer masterclasses of Christopher Parkening at the University of Montana at Bozeman.
Bentley was a member of the Neihardt-Bentley Guitar Duo for 15 years in which they toured much of the U.S. and performed as soloists with various orchestras. During that time they were chosen as finalists in the Concerts Atlantique Competition in New York and subsequently performed in Europe as a part of the Concerts Atlantique series.
In 1995 Bentley opened Bentley Guitar Studios in Parkville, Missouri where he currently teaches and sells classical and vintage acoustic and electric guitars. In addition to operating the studio Mr. Bentley currently teaches guitar at Park University and previously taught at Missouri State College for 16 years.
In addition to the present Bentley-Grimm Guitar Duo, Mark is a member of the Kansas City Guitar Quartet.
Jim Grimm is well known as a teacher, performer and arranger of music for the classical guitar. Jim has been a member of the music faculty at William Jewell College since 1978. He holds a Bachelors Degree from William Jewell College and a Masters Degree from California State University with further study at the Royal Conservatory of Music. Mr. Grimm has performed in numerous master classes with internationally acclaimed artists. His background also includes private study with world renowned guitarist Angel Romero.
Grimm's publications include: Christmas Music for Classical Guitar, Folk Melodies for Fingerstyle Guitar, Sacred Solos for Classical Guitar and Strum Some Fun . His compact disc entitled A Treasury of Carols for Classical Guitar released in 1998 is a collection of seventeen of his own arrangements of traditional Christmas carols for the guitar. A new recording of sacred music was released in the summer of 2000.
Mr. Grimm has performed extensively throughout the midwest performing as a solo artist and as a member of The Heartland Guitar Duo, The Kansas City Guitar Quartet, and the Jewell Flute and Guitar Duo.
During Jim's tenure at William Jewell College, he has presented master classes for his students with many of the world's finest guitarists including: Christopher Parkening (4 appearances), Manuel Barrueco (two appearances), Pepe Romero, Michael Lorimer, David Leiser, Elliot Fisk and Carlos Montoya.