James Stroud

Classical Guitar Competition

2021

presented by the

Cleveland International Classical Guitar Festival®

and hosted by the

Cleveland Institute of Music

Alexis Muzurakis (Greece) Greek guitarist Alexis Muzurakis is one half of the internationally acclaimed guitar ensemble Duo Melis.

Alexis Muzurakis and his wife, Spanish guitarist Susana Prieto, 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 baroque music to the music of Piazzolla, Ginastera, and Brouwerl it 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 Americas Annual Convention, and recitals in Chicago, St. Louis, Austin, Scranton, College Station, Houston, Brownsville, and Detroit. They have appeared twice for OMNI Concerts in San Francisco and three times for the Cleveland International Classical Guitar Festival. They were also 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."  

Susan Prieto and Alexis Mousurakis have engaged in postgraduate studies both as a 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 Mousurakis and Susana Prieto have taught at the Conservatoire National de Strasbourg in France.

Website: duo-melis.com/