Elena Papandreou was born in Athens on 7th March 1966. She studied the guitar with Evangelos Boudounis at the National Conservatory and graduated in 1985 with honours. She gave her first concert at the age of 15. She continued her studies with Gordon Crosskey at the Royal Northern College of Music, England, on a British Council scholarship, obtaining the Diploma in Advanced Studies in Musical Performance (1986). She also had lessons with Oscar Ghiglia, Alirio Diaz, Julian Bream, Leo Brouwer and Ruggero Chiesa. She has won the First Prize in three International Competitions, "Maria Callas" (Greece), "Gargnano" (Italy), "Alessandria" (Italy) and the Second Prize in the "Guitar Foundation of America" Competition. In the latter she was also awarded the "NAXOS" Prize, which gave her the opportunity to record two personal CDs with this company. She recently started her collaboration with the Swedish BIS while she had previously released five other records. In 1992 she was honoured by the Academy of Athens with the "Spyros Motsenigos" Prize - a most important prize that is awarded to one outstanding performer every two years. Elena Papandreou has performed in most European countries, as well as in the U.S.A., Canada, Venezuela and Puerto Rico. Within the "Rising Stars" program of the "European Concert Hall Organisation" (ECHO), she gave concerts in some of the most prestigious halls in Europe, the Vienna Musikverein, the Koelner Philharmonie, the Birmingham Symphony Hall and the Athens Concert Hall. She has also played in the Tchaikovsky Concert Hall in Moscow and the Queen Elisabeth Hall in London. She frequently tours the U.S.A. and in 1998 she gave her Carnegie Hall debut in New York. She has collaborated with outstanding musicians, the guitarists Alirio Diaz, Oscar Ghiglia, Roland Dyens, Nikita Koshkin, Evangelos Boudounis and Yorgos Mouloudakis, the violinists Leonidas Kavakos and Gerardo Ribeiro, the singers Vasso Papantoniou, Herbert Lippert and Nena Venetsanou, the flutists Stella Gadedi and Sofia Kamvissi. Elena Papandreou has played as a soloist with the State Orchestras of Athens and Thessaloniki, the Camerata Orchestra, the Orchestra of Colours, the Orchestra of Patras and the Orchestra of Alessandria, Italy. Performances of hers were recorded by the Greek Television and Radio, Radio France, Deutsche Welle and the Turkish Television. Elena Papandreou teaches at the National Conservatory in Athens, where she is also giving Postgraduate classes. Composers who have dedicated their works to her are Nikos Mamangakis (among others, a concerto for guitar and orchestra), Roland Dyens, Nikita Koshkin, Evangelos Boudounis, Giorgos Koumendakis and Dimitris Nicolau. For her interpretations she has received laudatory comments from significant people of the music world and enthusiastic reviews from the Press in Greece and abroad. Alirio Diaz said about her: "Her musicality through her refined technique cannot but stir up the admiration of her audience". And Leo Brouwer: "If you want to hear music of the highest level of interpretation with poetical perfection you must hear Elena Papandreou". The Washington Post called her "a poet of the guitar" and the Greek newspaper "Ta Nea" wrote: "Now we see Elena Papandreou as one of the greatest interpreters [...] the critic becomes silent ... when the Music begins".