For the third year in a row, the Twents Gitaarfestival will enjoy the visit of talented European guitarists during their yearly festival in the Penticost-weekend. This year, five emerging guitarists (EuroStrings Artists) will be traveling to the Netherlands. They have all won a competition in one of the 17 European guitarfestival swhich are collaboraborating in name of EuroStrings – European Guitar Festival Collaborative. The Twents Gitaarfestival is one of these collaborating festivals.
The guitarists whichwill be joining us in the Netherlands are from Croatia, Serbia, Slovenia, Spain and England. They willbe giving concerts, playing chambermusic and solo performances in three locations in and around Twente: Ahaus, Gronau and a third location which will soon be announced. Furthermore, they will provide masterclasses to guitar-pupils of Kaliber Enschede and will receive masterclasses from the famous Anabel Montesinos, who will also perform in concert at the Twents Gitaarfestival. Subsequently tot the joint concert of the five EuroStrings Artists, the overall winner of 2019’s EuroStrings competition Mateusz Kowalski (Poland) shall perform his guitar-music. At this moment, Mateusz is having a tour through the United States.
Just like the previous editions, the festival will again include certain Outreach Activities utilized by the EuroStrings Artists. For instance, concerts in elderly care facilities and other places where you usually do not find such talented classical guitarists. Additionally, they will play an educational concert in Theater Concordia with the five of them, especially for young guitarists who have just started their musical experience with the guitar: The Journey to the guitar. One of the EuroStrings Artists willbe a member of the jury-panel at the Kaj’s Guitarstore Competition, where the winner will be come the next Dutch submission for EuroStrings 2021.
Ema Kapor was born in 1998 in Belgrade (Serbia) where she graduated from primary music school and music high school “Stanković” in the class of Professor Boris Đujić. Afterwards, she completed two years of studies at the Koblenz International Guitar Academy (Germany) in Professor Hubert Käppel’s class. Currently, she is studying at the Cologne University of Music and Dance, also with Professor H. Käppel.
In 2014, she completed a course of the Summer Academy at the University of Mozarteum in Salzburg (Austria), in Professor Marco Tamayo’s class. In 2019, she participated at the Zbaszyn International Masterclass (Poland) held by Professor Lukasz Kuropaczewski and also completed a course at the International Music Academy – MusicAlp in Tignes (France) in the class of Professor Judicaël Perroy. Furthermore, she has attended masterclasses with many famous guitarists and pedagogues such as Oscar Ghiglia, Pepe Romero, David Russell, Costas Cotsiolis, Aniello Desiderio, Zoran Dukić, Alvaro Pierri, Marcin Dylla and others.
At guitar competitions, national and international, Ema has won more than 40 prizes: in Germany (Stuttgart, Oberhausen, Gevelsberg, Jüchen, Monheim, Velbert), Estonia (Tallinn), Austria (Vienna, Rust), Slovakia (Bratislava), Italy (Mottola, Alessandria, Gorizia), Greece (Molyvos – Lesvos, Hermoupolis – Syros, Volos, Thessaloniki), Croatia (Omiš), Liechtenstein, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia.
She has given solo concerts in Germany, Greece and Serbia and also performed in France, Poland, Spain and Austria. As a soloist accompanied by an orchestra, she has performed Joaquin Rodrigo’s “Fantasia para un Gentilhombre” in Timisoara (Romania) and in Belgrade (Serbia) at the Guitar Art Festival 2019.
Ema Kapor is promoted by the association Yehudi Menuhin Live Music Now – Cologne, which organizes concerts in social and medical institutions, for people of all ages who otherwise would not be able to experience public concerts live. In 2019, winning the first prize at the Tallinn Guitar Festival, she became part of the EuroStrings Artists Exchange Programme, earning the opportunity to tour festivals of the EuroStrings Platform.
His musical career began as a boy with the South London based choir “Libera” singing on multiple TV appearances, recordings and concerts across the country and abroad. George’s self taught beginnings later became an all-consuming passion which led him to his studies with Robert Brightmore and David Miller as a scholarship student at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama where he graduated with first-class honours in 2015.
He has made an appearance on BBC Radio 3’s “Late Junction” and later in 2015 performed the Concierto de Aranjuez with the Cerddorfa Dinas Powys Orchestra. After his studies George pursued an ensemble career with three Guildhall alumni forming the Mela Guitar Quartet. The quartet have since released their 2017 Naxos CD of Stephen Dodgson’s ‘Guitar Chamber Works’ and also their 2018 self released album ‘Pluck, Strum, and Hammer’. Mela will be releasing their second CD with Naxos in 2020 playing the guitar quartet works of Anthony Burgess.
Recent highlights include first prize in the ‘London International Guitar Competition’ as a soloist, first prize in the Acerra Guitar Festivals Ensemble competition, finalists at the Royal Overseas League’s String ensemble competition, a sell out concert at Southbank’s Purcell Room and a tour of China with the Mela Guitar Quartet performing in some of the countries most prestigious concert halls.
Luis Alejandro García
With more than 20 national and international awards to his credit, Luis Alejandro García (Tenerife, 1993) is one of the most awarded Spanish guitarists of his generation. Praised as an interpreter who combines ‘virtuosisy with exceptional musical nuance in his playing’ (Enric Madriguera, Russell Cleveland Director of Guitar Studies at UT Dallas), has won First Prizes at competitions such as the Coria International Guitar Competition, ‘José Tomás – Villa de Petrer’ International Guitar Competition, ‘Fernando Sor’ International Guitar Competition, the Permanent Competition of Juventudes Musicales de España or ‘Miquel Llobet’ International Guitar Competition of Barcelona, among many others.
He has given concerts and masterclasses in a large part of the Spanish geography, Germany, the United States, Austria, Chile, Argentina or Andorra, and has collaborated with orchestras such as the Tenerife Symphony Orchestra or OSLP. In 2018 he released his first CD, ‘Lazos sobre el Atlántico’, produced by JSM Guitar Records, in which he links his classical education with his Latin American music passion. He is a member of Canary Guitar Quartet, with which he has been internationally awarded, in addition to having released their first record, ’21’.
In continuous growth, his career will lead him to debut as a soloist in such famous venues as Palau de la Música Catalana (October 19’) or Teatro Monumental (April 20′), together with the National Radio and Television Orchestra of Spain (ORTVE), as well as concert tours on the USA, Mexico, Brazil, Argentina and around Europe, as an EuroString artist for 2019/2020 season.
Maja Kralj was born on the 1st of May 1999. She started playing guitar at the age of seven at the Music school Sežana. Her teacher at that time was Nataša Črnugelj. After finishing eight years of elementary music school in September 2014, she continued her education at the Conservatory for music and Ballet in Ljubljana. Her professor for four years there was Anton Črnugelj. In May 2018 Maja has completed the entrance exam and was accepted to Academy of Music Ljubljana in the class of prof. Andrej Grafenauer.
Her most important achievements are:
– 2nd Zagreb guitar festival (2016), 2nd prize, 2nd place
– 3rd Zagreb guitar festival (2017), 1st prize Winner
– TEMSIG, National competition for young musicians of Republic Slovenia 2017, 2nd prize, 2nd place (in guitar duo with Tine Črnugelj)
– Young Talent Competition at Uppsala XVI International Guitar Festival (2019), 1st prize Winner.
She has participated in many masterclasses with well known guitarists: Judicaël Perroy, Andrea De Vitis, Paolo Pegoraro, Alvaro Pierri, Brian Head, Xuefei Yang, Margarita Escarpa, Mak Grgić, Xhevdet Sahatxhija, Nejc Kuhar, Gabriel Bianco, Stephani Jones, Jure Cerkovnik, Anders Miolin, Costas Cotsiolis, Olaf van Gonnisen, Laura Young.
He started playing guitar at the age of 8 in a small town of Omiš in the class of Prof. Neno Munitić. In 2017. he enrolled at the Arts Academy in city of Split in the class of Prof. Maroje Brčić. He has been active in guitar competitions since 2008. and during his education as a soloist he has won 20 first prizes and as a member of chamber ensembles he has won 12 first prizes at many international and national competitions. He achieved great success at the competitions such as: “Andres Segovia” competition in Velbert (Germany), Montenegro Guitar Competition (Montenegro), Tremolo Guitar Festival (Macedonia), Altamira Gorizia Guitar Competition (Italy), Omiš Guitar Fest and Poreč Fest (Croatia). In 2014, 2017 and 2019 he won the award “Oscar of Knowledge” from the Croatian Ministry of Science, Education and Sports for winning the first prize at the National Competition as a soloist and as a member of chamber ensembles. Attended many masterclasses and consultations with world-renowned guitarists and pedagogues: Hubert Kaeppel (Germany) , Carlo Marchione (Italy), Aniello Desiderio (Italy), Pavel Steidl (Czech Republic), Lukasz Kuropaczewski (Poland), Goran Krivokapić (Montenegro), Georg Schimtz (Germany), Heiner Donath (Germany), Thomas Offermann (Germany), Vojislav Ivanovic (Serbia), Jorgos Panetsos (Greece) , Jan Erik Pettersen (Norway), Wade Oden (USA), Darko Petrinjak (Croatia), Xhevdet Sahatxija (Kosovo / Croatia).
He often works in collaboration with well-known Croatian drama artists at various cultural events.