Jaap van der Vliet studied at the conservatory in his hometown of Hilversum, continuing his studies with Peter Hoekmeijer at the Utrecht Conservatory. He has participated in masterclasses with Peter Damm and Bedrich Tylsár, among others.
At an early age, he worked as a substitute with the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra, which he immediately joined upon completing his studies in 1993. He has been a member of the horn section of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra since August 1996.
Van der Vliet is also an active chamber musician, performing regularly with such ensembles as Asko|Schoenberg, the Ives Ensemble and the Nieuw Ensemble. With other members of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, he also plays in the Ebony Band and the Brass of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra. Van der Vliet was a member of the Reicha Quintet for ten years and appeared as a soloist with the Residentie Orchestra in Schumann’s Konzertstück for four horns.
He teaches horn and coaches chamber music at the Utrecht Conservatory.