Gray Guitar Duo Coming to FCC for Recital


FCC’s Artist Recital Series welcomes back former faculty guitarist Serap Bastepe-Gray and her husband Julian Gray for a classical guitar recital on Saturday, Oct. 18.

“Ebony and Ivory on Nylon and Steel” will kick off at 7:30 p.m. in the JBK Theater.  This is the second time the Grays have performed together at FCC and this recital will consist of classical piano music transcribed for guitar by the Grays themselves. 

“Julian Gray’s history at FCC goes back to the 1980s when he was in a guitar duo with former FCC music faculty member Ronald Pearl, and both he and Serap are well-known performers here in Frederick,” said FCC Artist Series Coordinator John Wickelgren. “This will be a unique and interesting opportunity to hear how classical piano music sounds on two guitars.”

While a piano and guitar may not seem to have much in common, Julian Gray says piano music can often translate nicely to the guitar because the two instruments create sound the same way through percussion and share expressive capabilities, including an attack and decay on every note.

The program will feature music from three distinct parts of the world by six composers:  Spain (Domenico Scarlatti, Joaquin Turina), Eastern Europe (Frederic Chopin, Pyotr Tchaikovsky) and South America (Alberto Ginastera, Celso Machado). 

Admission to the concert is free. For more information, contact John Wickelgren at 301.668.0355.

Dr. Serap Bastepe-Gray is a faculty artist at the Peabody Conservatory, where she is Director of the Conservatory Guitar Ensemble program.  She has also served on the faculty at Frederick Community College.  She has a parallel career in medicine, specifically concentrating on musicians’ wellness and has written numerous articles including her latest, “Healthy Hands: A primer in injury management for guitarists.” 

Julian Gray has a distinguished career as performer, recording artist and teacher.  He is the chair of the Guitar Department at the Peabody Conservatory of Music in Baltimore, and is Director of Guitar Studies at the Shenandoah Conservatory in Winchester, Virginia.  His most recent articles, “Learning to Learn Parts I and II” appear in current issues of Soundboard- The Journal of the Guitar Foundation of America.  His recordings with former duo partner Ronald Pearl, including Scarlatti Duos for the Dorian-Sono Luminus label, have been widely acclaimed.