The Stelios Petrakis Quartet
Filmed at WOMEX 2013 in Cardiff, Wales by Michal Shapiro.

Adonis Stavrakakis (kopuz, laouto, vocals)
Giorgos Stavrakakis ( laouto, vocals)
Stelios Petrakis (lyra, laouto, vocals)
Thanassis Mavrokostas (dance, Cretan cello)

“Will you LOOK at the size of that Bass Lyra!!” - Jeff Greene, delegate to WOMEX, and president of Evergreene Music, upon seeing the setup on the stage for the Stelios Petrakis Quartet.

First off, all the instruments you see being played in this video were made by Mr Petrakis, the man playing the Cretan Lyra. He is a luthier as well as a musician, and has studied to be both, with the best. He was raised in Crete, and started his musical studies at the age of 7, and was taught by Ross Daly, and then by Eleni Drettaki, who he describes as “heroic.”

At any rate, here is a wonderful performance of original music from Crete, based on traditional forms. The moods range from the somber to the intoxicating, and as far as I am concerned it is all simply grand. I am no expert on the music of Crete, the largest of the Greek Islands, so I simply enjoyed the passion and sheer enjoyment that was coming off the stage –along with a formidable amount of technique. Upon writing to Mr. Petrakis, to learn more specifics about the music, I received a warm letter, with plenty of information.

The excerpt I am presenting here is a 3 song suite: “Kavo Sideros” (Stelios Petrakis – Yiannis Petrakis) “Pare me nyhta” (Stelios Petrakis / Mitsos Stavrakakis) and “Syrtos Nikaias” (Patrick Vaillant).

Read Mr. Petrakis’ explanations on Intermuse

Video and commentary ©2013 Michal Shapiro/Intermuse

return to rootsworld Further reading:
Stelios Petrakis, Efren Lopez, Bijan Chemirani: Mavra Froudia
Kevin Seddiki & Bijan Chemirani: Imaginarium
Trio Chemirani: Invite