Stelios Petrakis Cretan Quartet
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Stelios Petrakis Cretan Quartet

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Oct
30
Stelios Petrakis Cretan Quartet @ Centre Culturel Daniel Balavoine

Arcques, None, France

Arcques, None, France

Jun
28
Stelios Petrakis Cretan Quartet @ Festival Journées des cinq continents

Martigny, None, Switzerland

Martigny, None, Switzerland

Jun
27
Stelios Petrakis Cretan Quartet @ Haapavesi Folk Music Festival

Haapavesi, None, Finland

Haapavesi, None, Finland

Music

The best kept secret in music

Press


The instrument, the Cretan lyra, was the broader and slightly bigger Aegean cousin of the Pontic spike fiddle, and the CD, Orion, was the work of the brilliant young Cretan lyra player, Stelios Petrakis. Orion became my favourite CD that year, and the more I listened to it, the more I wanted to meet Petrakis and learn about the world that produced this elegiac and oddly medieval-sounding musical tradition. - Financial Times


Sous le firmament musical et au carrefour de l’Orient et de l’Europe, brille Orion, le dernier opus du crétois Stelios Petrakis : des voix claires et transparentes sur des textes poétiques et mélancoliques, mélangées à des cordes puissantes comme la foudre de Zeus. Après les « confins du monde » (Akri tou dounia, son dernier opus), ce virtuose s’envole vers la voie lactée où vibrent lyra, luth crétois, kopuz (mandoline), accompagnés des daff, zarb, bendir et autres udu, percussions maniées de mains de maître par Bijan Chemirani… - Mondomix


The first few seconds of this disc should be enough to convince anyone that the Cretan lyra isn’t a mere folk fiddle, but a profound and sophis- ticated instrument of the eastern Mediterranean. Petrakis begins with a powerful lyra solo over a drone bass. The notes are delicately inflected from the warm low register up to the ringing treble. The way the strings are stopped with a touch of the fingernails, rather than the fingers, gi- ves the lyra a delicate, nasal tone. After his introduction the band joins in with an eclectic range of instruments – Bulgarian bagpipes, guitar, cello, hurdy-gurdy, ney flute and distinctive tombak drum from percus- sionist Bijan Chemirani.
Simon Broughton - Songlines Magazine


Discography

- Mavra Froudia (Musiépoca - 2011)
- If i greet the mountains (Accords Croisés - 2010)
- Orion (Buda Musique - 2009)
- Akri Tou Dounia (L'Empreinte Digitale - 2003)
- Kismet (Buda Musique - 2005)
- Eos (L'Empreinte Digitale - 2002)

Photos

Bio

"My love and admiration of Cretan music have led me to form a new ensemble, the Cretan Quartet. My aim is to condense and present in a lively and tasteful way, both on the island and off it, my own “Cretan” compositions and the pieces of our traditional music that I admire and find moving. This programme is strongly stamped by and filtered through my personal taste, drawing on my long familiarity with the music of the island and my experience of strictly aesthetically delimited and timed “shows” at international festivals. It is in concert form, and at specific points includes dancing with or without musical accompaniment." Stelios Petrakis

THANASSIS MAVROKOSTAS ° Dance – Mandoura
Thanassis is a top dancer with his own style, combining perfect technique with strength, nimbleness and an improvisatory mood. As the student from birth of his parents, Dimitris and Eleni Mavrokosta, he has different roots (Anogia – Agia Galini) and vast experience of and contact with Cretan dance, despite his youth. He is also an excellent musician (lyra – mandolin – mandoura), a dance teacher, a singer and, above all, a connoisseur.

ANDONIS STAVRAKAKIS ° Mandolin – Laouto – Vocal
Andonis is a musician and singer of exceptional skill, ability and prospects. When you have skill, talent, and top teachers within your own family (Vassilis and Michalis Stavrakakis), the result is, predictably, also excellent… He incorporates the style and technique of the musicians in his family, while preserving his own personal singing and playing tone.

GIORGOS STAVRAKAKIS ° Laouto - Vocal
Giorgos Stavrakakis is a young virtuoso on the Cretan lute. Being the son of the Master Singer Vassilis Stavrakakis, Giorgos is playing in countless concerts every year accompanying his father with the lute. Despite his young age he has also collaborated with many other Cretan musicians, in concerts within Crete and abroad.

STELIOS PETRAKIS ° Lyra, Laouto
Stelios Petrakis, a young composer and virtuoso lyra and lute player from the island of Crete, has always been interested in musical exchanges between musicians from different musical backgrounds.