Valérie Hartzell began her classical guitar studies on a half-size Ramirez at the age of three. At the age of six, she studied with maestro Alexandre Lagoya at the Académie Internationale d’Eté in Nice, France.
She has performed in Europe, Canada, the U.S. and has appeared on television in Nice, FR and Houston, TX. She has also been featured on National Public Radio in Texas and Alaska, the show “Women in Music” which is broadcast on CKWR, 98.5 FM Canada, and on the BBC Radio in the UK.
She has performed in over 30 festivals, including East Carolina University Competition and Festival in Greenville, NC, the 2010 ChamberArt Music Festival in Madrid, Spain, the Pennsylvania Academy of Music Festival where she shared the stage with Eliot Fisk, Guitaromania in Agen, France, and at the Menil Community Arts Festival Performance at the Rothko Chapel. Hartzell has been featured as a guest soloist for the New York City Classical Guitar Society, the Grand Canyon Guitar Society, the Performing Arts Society of Kenai, the Oxford Guitar Society in England, at Arizona State University, at University of Texas at Dallas, at Svenska Margaretakyrkan in Oslo, Norway, at University of Alaska at Anchorage, at Peck School of the Arts (University of Milwaukee-Wisconsin) and at Studley Castle in England. Valerie has also collaborated with the Houston Grand Opera at the Rienzi Recital Series, the Kingwood Pops Orchestra of Kingwood and with the Houston Chamber Choir. Recently, she gave an eleven concert tour of Alaska as part of Duo Amici (with mezzo-soprano & pianist, Tamara McCoy) and a six concert tour in England, including a London debut in 2016.
She is a prizewinner in 8 international competitions including 1st prizes at the 10th International Guitar Competition “Simone Salmaso” in Italy and at the Concours de Guitare Classique Heitor Villa-Lobos in France. Ms. Hartzell has a Bachelor’s from Peabody Conservatory where she studied with Manuel Barrueco on scholarship and a Master’s Degree from Radford University where she was awarded a Graduate Teaching Fellowship.
She has two recordings; Ex Tenebris...Lux, a soloproject and Presti, an ensemble project, which were both recorded at the National Public Radio studios in Houston. Currently, Hartzell lives in Bedfordshire, United Kingdom where she maintains an active concert career both as a soloist and as a chamber musician. She is also the music director of the North Bucks Guitar Club in Woburn, England and the artistic director of the annual “Classical Minds” Guitar Festival and Competition held in Houston, Texas.