It is impossible to watch the Eden Stell Guitar Duo without being bowled over, not only by their natural abundance of virtuosic brilliance, but also by their gift for communication with their audience. This passion for the guitar and their evident delight in performing brings the music vividly to life whether it be a baroque harpsichord transcription or a new commission.
After graduating from the Royal Academy as recipients of the Principal's Prize for Achievement and the Julian Bream Prize they continued their studies in Brussels with the Brazilian Guitar Duo, Sergio and Odair Assad, with the aid of the Worshipful Company of Musicians. As winners of the Park Lane Group's Young Artists' Concert Series and the South East Musicians' Platform they have given recitals at the Purcell Room and the Wigmore Hall, and have subsequently been invited to perform there by music organisations such as 'Live Music Now!', the Kirckman Concert Society, and Classical Guitar Magazine. Other engagements include festivals and recitals in Germany, France, Holland, Belgium, Spain, Italy, Romania and Canada, numerous radio and TV appearances on ITV, BBC and European networks, and in 2002 they toured Germany with the Prague Chamber Orchestra performing in some of Europe's largest concert halls.
The duo have had works dedicated to them by Stephen Dodgson, Adam Gorb, Dusan Bogdanovic and Gerald Garcia, and have performed double concerti by Rodrigo, Castelnuovo-Tedesco, Vivaldi, Santorsola and Dodgson. In March 2000, Mark and Chris were elected Associates of the Royal Academy of Music in recognition of their performing achievements. Mark teaches at the Birmingham Conservatoire and the Junior Department of the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and Chris teaches at the Welsh College of Music and Drama. The duo play Christopher Dean guitars and use D'Addario strings.
"Unanimous ensemble, clarity of tone and texture, and an original programme ... the Duo's uncanny co-ordination of highly complex rhythms and harmonics was enthralling ...a truly virtuoso performance." Musical Opinion
"Mark Eden and Christopher Stell have breathed new life into the world of the classical guitar...they do what a whole generation of guitarists haven't - they communicate the music first and foremost, not just the technical demands. Never before have I heard such natural ornamentation and trills produced on the guitar...it was beyond belief. Here is the future of guitar music" Rotterdam Dagblad, Netherlands
"The Eden-Stell Duo are one of the best duos around. This is a landmark recording on the guitar's map." Gramophone
"So impeccable is their sense of ensemble, that for most of this superb disc Mark Eden and Christopher Stell, who teemed up as teenagers at the Royal Academy of Music, perform akin to a miraculous single guitarist, blessed with an impossibly wonderful technique and an exceptionally delicate touch. The refined transcriptions by the recitalists and others of these baroque keyboard works are not to be underestimated, together with some tastefully crisp production, adding to that sense of elegance that pervades this unique release." The Observer
"The playing I most sheerly enjoyed, however, came from the guitar duo Mark Eden and Christopher Stell. Their performance exuded such natural vitality and joy in their skills and rapport that I was hanging on almost every note..... a riveting experience." The Independent Website