Johan graduated in 1983 at the Sweelinck Conservatory in Amsterdam. Followed masterclasses with Iwan Roth, Daniel Defayet, Frederik Hemke, Francois Daneels and others. In 1982, together with his colleagues, André Arends, Arno Bornkamp and Willem van Merwijk, he founded the Aurelia Saxophone Quartet. This Saxophone Quartet has become one of the leading chamber music ensembles in the world. In 2013, Johan left the quartet after 31 fertile years. From 1982 to 1990, Johan van der Linden was appointed as Saxophonist of the Royal Military Band in The Hague.
In addition to his work as a teacher of Saxophone at the Conservatory in Zwolle (ArtEZ) and Utrecht (HKU), Van der Linden works as a freelance saxophonist with: Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, Residentie Orchestra, Radio Philharmonisch Orchestra.
Johan is a core member of the famous Nederlands Blazers Ensemble
In addition to the busy playing and teaching practice and master classes all over the world, Van der Linden is also busy developing new saxophone repertoire for publishers, Molenaar Edition, Donemus, Tierolff, Matchingarts edition and G.M.F.
With the pianist Henry Kelder he has placed a duo that focuses on new music specially written for the duo at Matching Arts, Recently they released their new cd.
Johan was co-founder of Splendor Amsterdam. The place where artists and the public inspire the world.
Johan is an endorser of Selmer saxophones, D’addario reeds and Silverstein ligatues.