With a shared enthusiasm for the duo medium, James Manuele and Foti Lycouridis formed the Portland Guitar Duo in 1999. They’ve performed in numerous venues throughout the United States as a duo team, as soloists with chamber ensembles, and in appearances on radio and television stations.
The Portland Guitar Duo focus on Historical Interpretation and perform on a number of instruments from the guitar and lute families such as Renaissance, Baroque lutes and Mandora, Baroque guitars, Romantic guitars of the 1800s, Modern Classical guitars and 10-string guitars.
In addition to their own transcriptions, two Northwest composers, Matt Doran and Rebecca Oswald, have written works for the Duo.
James was born in Downey, California and started playing guitar at the age of 11. At age 15 he was selected to study with Celine Romero. James earned a Bachelor of Music degree under Pablo Cohen at Mansfield University and a Master of Music under composer/guitarist Bryan Johanson at Portland State University. James has created 2 instructional DVDs for Jeffrey Ashton’s “New Guitar Method” and has published his own method “Basic Guitar Method Tidbits”. He is a guitar instructor in the greater Portland area at Clark College, Concordia University and Marylhurst University.
Foti grew up in Athens, Greece and came to the US in 1981 to study music. He holds a Bachelor of Music in Guitar Performance and a Master of Music in Music Theory from the University of Portland. He has studied analysis and composition with Thomas Svoboda whose music became the subject of his Master’s thesis research. Foti has transcribed music of Cimarosa, Mozart, Chopin, Purcel, Mompou, Jimenez, Hatzidakis, Ravel and Cage for guitar duo, trio and quartet. He has also been a member of the Geminus Guitar Duo and the Cascadia Guitar Duo.