John Benz was born in London and received his musical education in Australia and Germany. After completing his Honours Degree with Kurt Hess at the University of Adelaide and chamber music studies with the Australian String Quartet in Adelaide, he continued his studies in Europe. He was awarded a German Music Performance Diploma at the Staatliche Musikhochschule Freiburg in 1993. He participated in music courses in Europe for Cello and Chamber music with world renowned artists such as Anner Bylsma, Janos Starker, Rainer Kussmaul, William Pleeth, Reinhard Goebbels and the Cleveland String Quartet.
In Australia he has been a member of the Adelaide Chamber Orchestra and was a founding member of the Adelaide Cello Ensemble. He has recorded in Germany with the Odeon String Quartet and Camerata Europeana and Heidelberg Chamber Orchestra. Concert Tours have led him through Europe, Russia, Korea and the USA with Ensemble Franz Schubert, Ensemble Cologne and Zurich Symphony Orchestra. 2001-2009 he was a member of the Dijon Opera Orchestra in France and artistic director of the Flavigny Music festival in Burgundy.
1993-2009 he held teaching positions at music schools in South Germany. Since moving back to Sydney in 2009, he has been teaching at both the Wollongong Conservatorium of Music and at Kambala School in Sydney’s east.
He is currently Principal Cello of the Metropolitan Orchestra and has been playing with the orchestra since its inception.