“Very melodic playing, and great chops too!” Steve Vai
“I was super impressed with Irene’s ability to combine her high level shred guitar abilities with catchy, high energy songs. Martial Arts & Magic Tricks is an awesome album!” Greg Howe
“Irene has great tone, feel and technique, and the song she played wasn’t just an excuse for look-how-fast-I-can-play widdling but stood up as a composition too.” Neil Murray (Bass player for Black Sabbath/Brian May/Whitesnake/Gary Moore etc)
“I first saw Irene play at the Guitar Nation show at Olympia in London. She performed with great confidence, feel and control and has a good, solid technique. I am positive she will do very well if she keeps up this good work – I am very impressed” Phil Hilborne (one of the UK’s most respected teacher/player/ magazine columnist)
Born in Ioannina, Greece, Irene Ketikidi started playing electric guitar at the age of 15. She relocated to Athens in 2001, where she studied music at the Philippos Nakas Conservatory, part of the Berklee international network partners, allowing her to expand her knowledge of music and graduating with a diploma in Jazz Harmony & Theory in 2003. In 2007, she relocated to the UK to attend London’s prestigious Guitar Institute (ICMP) and graduated in 2010 with a Bmus degree and a level 6 Licentiate in teaching music, while also complimenting her studies with UK leading rock specialist Martin Goulding.
Since graduating, Irene has performed/worked with electropop London band Red N Pink, pop singer Cherry Lee Mewis, hip hop artists AKS and JTheex, afrobeat trombonist and percussionist Toli Nameless, melodic metal band GraVil, RnB singer/songwriter Ruchelle Scott, Eurovision vocalist Maja Slatinsek and has been featured in many artists’ recordings. She has toured extensively with female tributes “The Femones” (Ramones) and “Back:N:Black” (AC/DC), as well as various session gigs including performances at the biggest venues in the UK and Europe’s festival stages. Most recently she was the lead guitarist and guest actor at at London’s West End play “Julius Caesar” (sell-out performances in London and New York transfer) directed by the award-winning Phyllida Lloyd (Mamma Mia, The Iron Lady) and toured with Nashville country singer/songwriter Colm Kirwan, 2X Emmy winner singer Victoria Shaw and Heidi Feek. Over the years, Irene has also worked on side projects with session musicians of The Darkness, Saint Saviour, Elsie LC, Adam Bomb, We Will Rock You and Thriller Live West End shows and X Factor UK.
In February 2013, she released her debut solo instrumental album “Martial Arts & Magic Tricks”, featuring Dave Marks on bass, keyboards and additional rhythm guitars, Darby Todd on drums and including stunning guest performances by David Kilminster (Roger Waters), Phil Hilborne (Brian May, Nicko McBrain) and Justin Sandercoe (Katie Melua). Way before its official release, Irene performed “Rambler” (3rd album tune) at Steve Vai‘s masterclass as part of the Guitar Nation event at London’s Olympia and also got into Guitar Idol III top 100 with the same tune in 2010. Irene has also contributed tuition columns to the Guitar Website Live4Guitar.com and was a guest instructor and course writer at the 2010 and 2011 International Guitar Foundation courses in London.