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George Sakellariou



with opening performance by JON MENDLE

Saturday, October 24, 2015; 7:30 pm

Experience the seductive, inspiring music of an old world master—classical guitarist George Sakellariou, still at the top of his game—with an introductory set by young Jon Mendle, already recruited by Yo-Yo Ma and the Pacific Guitar Ensemble for his enchanting virtuosity on his 11-string "arch-guitar."

George Sakellariou began playing the guitar at an early age in Athens, Greece. His first teacher was his brother, a talented composer of popular music. Sakellariou received his formal training from the Conservatory of Music in Athens. After graduating with honors, he was invited to further his studies with the renowned guitarist Segovia when the great master heard him play.

Upon completion of his studies at the age of 20, Sakellariou joined the faculty of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music where he became chairman of the Guitar Department. There, he taught his style of playing, with emphasis on clear tone and smooth lyrical lines, combined with a precise, strong sense of rhythm.

Mr. Sakellariou has performed around the world in concert halls from the Kennedy Center and other major halls in the United States to Singapore, Hong Kong, Turkey, Heidelberg, Rio de Janeiro, Bogota, Montevideo, Toronto, Calgary, Taipei, Osaka, and others. At the Toronto Festival, he performed the Leo Brouwer Guitar Concerto for the guitar and orchestra with Leo Brouwer conducting. This performance was considered an incredible feat because he replaced guitarist John Williams on short notice.

He has made many radio and television appearances including BBC, PBS, and Radio France. Several extensive and impressive articles about Mr. Sakellariou have been published in the internationally renowned Guitar Player magazine. His current CD, Take Five on Six Strings, is available through CD Baby.

Classical guitarist Jon Mendle has performed around the country since his Carnegie Hall debut at age 19 and has drawn widespread praise for his virtuosity and musicianship. Soundboard magazine called his debut album, L'Infidele, a "beautiful disc." Yo-Yo Ma, who in 2010 invited Jon to join him and the Silk Road Ensemble on a 10-concert tour, calls Jon a "beautiful talent and a sensitive musician," adding, "It is a joy to play with him!"

Based in San Francisco, Jon had the honor of performing a solo recital at the Guitar Foundation of America's 2014 annual convention in Los Angeles, California. He has also given solo recitals for presenters such as San Francisco Performances, as well as the guitar societies of Sacramento, Seattle, and Vancouver, among others. He has performed as a soloist with the Oakland East Bay Symphony, the Solano Symphony, the Bay Area Rainbow Symphony, and the San Francisco Conservatory of Music Orchestra. On tour with Yo-Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble, Jon performed at the Tanglewood and Ravinia summer music festivals as well as at Detroit's Orchestra Hall and other major venues.

Jon's debut recording, L'Infidele, which includes transcriptions of 18th century lute and keyboard music, received critical acclaim following its 2011 release by In a Circle Records. The Huffington Post described the album as "stunning and textured," while Northwest Reverb praised Jon's "incredible artistry and deep musicianship." Soundboard wrote, "Mendle's playing is a wonder."

A committed chamber musician, Jon is a member of the San Francisco Guitar Quartet. As a teacher, Jon is an Adjunct Professor of Guitar at Pacific Union College in Angwin, California, and maintains a private studio.

Jon completed his graduate studies at the San Francisco Conservatory under the tutelage of Latin Grammy-winner Sergio Assad. He also received his undergraduate degree from the Conservatory, studying under Lawrence Ferrara, Marc Teicholz, David Tanenbaum, and Dusan Bogdanovic.

Jon's primary instrument is an 11-string arch-guitar built in 2007 by Alan Perlman of San Francisco. The instrument is a hybrid of early and modern guitars, making it ideal to play a wide range of early music as well as certain modern and impressionist works. Jon's solo repertoire includes music from periods ranging from the Renaissance to the contemporary era.

From the start, Sacramento Guitar Society concerts at Harris Center for the Arts have seen brilliant artistry from international artists. You don’t have to go to San Francisco to hear great international classical guitarists on tour! Our productions at Harris Center for the Arts have set the bar for world class un-amplified guitar artistry.

Sacramento Guitar Society (SGS) provides local access to high level artistic performances, workshops, monthly meetings, a community guitar orchestra, community outreach, information and plenty of good music! SGS is a non-profit educational and service organization that has existed in one form or another since at least 1961 – drawn together by the classical guitar and its music. In the course of countless gatherings in homes, schools and community centers to share music and camaraderie, guitar teachers and their students, professional concert artists, amateur aficionados and the public have met to enjoy this art form and the related styles that can overlap, including flamenco, jazz and steel-string fingerstyle.


$20-$34; Premium $39
Seniors $20-$31
Students with ID $18


Event Length

2 hours, 5 minutes; with 15 minute intermission

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