Truly an outstanding concert. The mastery of their instruments is a given, their musicianship is exceptional...The experience is breathtaking, beautiful and inspiring.
Bowled over by the quality and performance style of these two young musicians.
Duo - Instrumental
- Meera Maharaj - Flute
- James Girling - Guitar
Dvořák (arr Meraki Duo) - Sonatina, Op 100
Rafael Marino Arcaro (new commission)- À Norte Rio Preto
Bacharach (arr Girling) – A House Is Not a Home
Bartók – Romanian Folk Dances
Carmichael (arr Meraki) – Skylark
Chick Corea (arr Girling) – Selections from Children's Songs; Spain
Falla – Suite populaire espagnole
Tom Jobim – Corcovado; Luiza
Messiaen (arr Girling) - 5 Leçons de solfège
Piazzolla – Histoire du Tango; Oblivion
Quarteto Novo (arr. Meraki Duo)- Misturada; O Ovo
Andy Scott (arr. Girling) – Nemesis; Paquito; And Everything Is Still
Miroslav Tadić – Four Macedonian Pieces
Takemitsu – Toward the Sea
Villa-Lobos – Bachianas Brasileiras No.5 (Aria)
Meraki Duo’s programmes offer a distinctively diverse pairing of flute and guitar, incorporating James Girling’s arrangements of works which range from Messiaen’s ‘5 Leçons de solfège’ and the Brazilian folk-fusion of Hermeto Pascoal to settings of jazz standards – originally commissioned by Jacqui Dankworth. In 2020 at 1901 Arts Club, Meraki Duo premièred ‘À Norte, Rio Preto’, written for them by the Brazilian composer Rafael Marino Arcaro. In their recitals, Meera Maharaj extends the expressive range of the duo by featuring the alto flute in works such as Takemitsu’s ‘Toward The Sea’ and Tadic’s ‘Four Macedonian Pieces’.
Meera and James both studied at the Royal Northern College of Music, where they connected through a shared passion for chamber music, jazz, Latin American and European folk, and contemporary works. Formed in 2013, Meraki Duo were selected for International Guitar Foundation’s Young Artist Platform 2019/20. In 2019, they were finalists in the Royal Over-Seas League Competition (Mixed Ensembles) in London. They enjoy performing concerts from Northumberland to Cornwall and at venues such as Wigmore Hall, Kings Place and the Bridgewater Hall.
Meera is currently a Tunnell Trust, Park Lane Group and Countess of Munster Recital Scheme artist, alongside pianist Dominic Degavino. Competition successes include first prize in the Royal Academy of Music Flute Competition and Dutch International Flute Competition and 3rd prize in the British Flute Society Competition. She graduated with Distinction in her Masters, studying with Michael Cox at the Royal Academy of Music. In 2017, she graduated from the RNCM (first class honours), studying with Wissam Boustany and Laura Jellicoe. She has performed at the Concertgebouw, Bridgewater Hall, Wigmore Hall and St Martin-in-the-Fields.
James is a stylistically versatile guitarist. Tutored by Craig Ogden, James is the only guitarist to have won the RNCM’s Gold Medal. Since giving his Wigmore Hall solo debut in 2017, James has performed with the BBC Philharmonic, Hallé Orchestra and RLPO’s Ensemble 10/10. Following performances of Rodrigo’s Fantasía para un Gentilhombre, he made his Concierto de Aranjuez debut in 2019. James’ chamber music performances include Leeds International Concert Season, Chester Music Festival in a tango quintet comprising international soloists such as Abel Selaocoe, and Church Stretton Arts Festival as the Aquarelle Guitar Quartet’s only ever dep.