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Astraea Guitar Duo

Astraea Guitar Duo, Raymond Burley and Valerie Hartzell, met in December 2014 at an Oxford Guitar Society meeting and the two guitarists decided to play a few duos together for fun. Their first duo recital took place at St Michael at the North Gate in Oxford in March, 2015. That summer, Raymond and Valerie officially founded their duo and a tour throughout England followed in November 2015. As the Astraea Guitar Duo, they have performed for an Amnesty International Fundraiser, at the historic Holywell Room in Oxford, Warrington Parish Church of St Elphin, Studley Castle in Warwickshire, South Hill Park Arts Centre in Bracknell, Lopping Hall in Essex, at the Hillscourt Conference Centre in Birmingham, and at the Peel Centre, Thomas Taylor Hall in Dronfield.


Raymond Burley

Raymond Burley is one of Britain's most experienced guitarists having performed solo concerts, concertos, on film scores, radio, and television and in virtually every possible guitar ensemble combination.

As a soloist he has toured extensively throughout the UK, Europe, the USA, South America, Canada and the Far East, and has appeared many times at London's Wigmore Hall, the South Bank Centre's Purcell Room, and Birmingham's Symphony Hall. Raymond has been featured on BBC Radio, and worked with many of England's foremost orchestras including the BBC Symphony, the Philharmonia, the English Chamber Orchestra and the Royal Philharmonic.

Raymond has premiered many new works by composers that include Stephen Dodgson, Bernard Stevens, Reginald Smith Brindle, John Duarte, Raymond Head, Edmundo Vasquez, Richard Stoker, James Patten, Gilbert Biberian, Dudley Moore, Bryan Kelly, Elis Pehkonen, Christopher Wright, Timothy Bowers, Tom Eastwood, Colette Mourey, Mark Houghton, Jerome de Bromhead and John Scott.

He is also in great demand as a teacher and has given master-classes and directed guitar workshops, festivals and summer schools throughout the UK and in Dublin, Vancouver, Ottawa, Toronto, Calgary, Seattle, San Francisco, Salt Lake City, Washington DC, New York, Princeton, Bremen, Bonn, Rotterdam and Lima.


Valerie Hartzell

Valerie Hartzell has performed in over 30 festivals and as a guest soloist for the NYC Classical Guitar Society, the Grand Canyon Guitar Society, the Performing Arts Society of Kenai, Alaska, the Oxford Guitar Society in England, at Arizona State University, at the SAE Institute which was sponsored by the Oxford Guitar Society, at Svenska Margaretakyrkan in Oslo, Norway and at Clare Hall, University of Cambridge. She is a prize-winner of 8 international competitions, and has been featured on NPR, BBC Radio and PBS. She has also been featured in Soundboard Magazine, Classical Guitar Magazine (UK), and Gendai Magazine (Japan). Her two recordings, Ex Tenebris Lux and Presti, have received rave reviews.

Valerie has a Bachelor of Music from the Peabody Conservatory where she studied with Manuel Barrueco on scholarship and a Masters Degree from Radford University where she was awarded a Graduate Teaching Fellowship.

As a private instructor, her students have received scholarships to prominent universities, such as San Francisco Conservatory, University of Texas, Arizona State University, Schwob School of Music at Columbus State University, and University of Louisville.

Hartzell is the founder and Artistic Director of the "Classical Minds" Guitar Festival & Competition since 2004. She resides in Bedfordshire, where she keeps busy teaching and touring but crosses the pond often to appear in concerts throughout the United States.


Astraea Guitar Duo: Raymond Burley & Valerie Hartzell

Astraea Guitar Duo:
Sonata K.312 (arr. Ron Pearl) Domenico Scarlatti (1685-1757)
Sonata K.87 (arr. Ray Burley)
Agua y Vinho (arr. Burley) Egberto Gismonti (b 1947)
Valerie Hartzell:
Asturias (arr. Segovia/Hartzell) Isaac Albeniz (1860-1909)
Dawn at Ynys Goch Mark Houghton (b. 1959)
Astraea Guitar Duo:
Danza Espanola No.5, 11, 6 (arr. Burley) Enrique Granados (1867-1916)
Astraea Guitar Duo:
Partie Polonaise Georg Philipp Telemann (1681-1767)

Ich Denke Dein Johann Kaspar Mertz (1806-1856)
Ray Burley:
Cadiz op.47, no.4 (arr. Burley) Isaac Albeniz
Four Epitafios (arr. Myers) Mikis Theodorakis (b. 1925)
Locks of hair,
One day in May,
You Have Set, my Star,
You were standing in front of the window
Astraea Guitar Duo:
Intermezzo from the opera Goyescas (arr. Emilio Pujol) Enrique Granados
Imagens do Nordeste Celso Machado (b. 1953)