Saturday November 2, 2019
Knox Presbyterian Church (3704 37th St SW)
Spanish guitarist Susana Prieto and Greek guitarist Alexis Muzurakis made their debut as Duo Melis in 1999 at the International Guitar Festival of Volos (Greece). Since then they have performed in such prestigious halls as the Berlin Philharmonie, the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, the Tchaikovsky Hall in Moscow, the Megaron in Athens, and the Merkin Concert Hall in New York. They are in great demand for concerts and master classes at international guitar festivals and prestigious concert series in Europe and America.
They have won numerous prizes, both individually and together. In 1999, as a duo, they won first prize at the International Guitar Duo Competition of Frechen (Germany). The following year they won the prestigious Guitar Duo Competition of Montelimar (France) as well as the 21st International Guitar Duo Competition "Mauro Giuliani" (Italy). In 2001 they captured the Duo/Ensemble prize at the Chamber Music Competition of Leipzig (Germany) and the same year were the winners at the International Guitar Duo Competition of Paris (France). In 2003 they recorded their first CD after winning the recording prize Citta di Verona at the International Chamber Music Competition "Gaetano Zinetti" (Italy). In 2005 they successfully auditioned for the Yehudi Menuhin Society Live Music Now.
Duo Melis has collaborated with the Berliner Symphoniker, the Neubrandenburger Philharmonie, the Bayerische Kammerphilharmonie, the Radio Orchestra of Bucharest, and the National Orchestra of Thessaloniki conducted by Leo Brouwer. Their wide repertoire spans from the baroque music to the music of A. Piazzolla, A. Ginastera, Leo Brouwer, and also includes concertos for two guitars and orchestra by Rodrigo, Castelnuovo-Tedesco and Vivaldi as well as the newly composed concerto of Marek Pasieczny dedicated to Duo Melis.
Recent appearances in North America include the Guitar Foundation of America Annual Convention, and recitals in Chicago, St. Louis, Austin, Scranton, College Station, Houston, Brownsville, and Detroit. They have appeared twice for both OMNI Concerts in San Francisco and the Cleveland Classical Guitar Weekend. They were featured artists at the Bethlehem Guitar Festival in Pennsylvania. In Europe, they have presented recitals in Italy, Greece, Germany, Poland, Russia, Spain, Rumania, Holland, Czech Republic, Austria, Norway, Sweden and France. Following their performance at the GFA Convention in 2008, Mark Switzer wrote in Soundboard:
"The performance of Duo Melis was one of my favorites of the conference; their playing was technically superb, musically convincing, and demonstrated fantastic ensemble."
Susana and Alexis have studied in Spain and Greece respectively. They continued their postgraduate studies as duo and as solo artists at the Koninklijk Conservatorium in The Hague (Holland), the "Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy" Conservatory in Leipzig (Germany), and the Conservatory "Hanns Eisler" in Berlin (Germany).
Since 2006 Alexis and Susana have taught at the Conservatoire National de Strasbourg in France.