Christian Gruber (born 1965) and Peter Maklar (born 1964), living in Bavaria/Germany, have worked together as a guitar duo since 1985. They met during their studies in Augsburg and Heidelberg/Mannheim under Helmut Hehl and Walter Schumacher-Löffler. Master courses directed by Alvaro Pierri, Leo Brouwer, Sergio & Odair Assad and Angelo Gilardino put the finishing touches on their professional training. Their international career began when Gruber and Maklar won first prize at the International Contest for Guitar Duos in Montélimar/France in 1991.
Gruber and Maklar have given numerous concerts in nearly all European countries, as well as in Mexico, Chile, Martinique, Canada, USA, Russia, and Japan.They have performed in renowned concert halls, such as the “Manhattan School of Music” in New York, the “Tschaikowsky Philharmonic Orchestra Hall” in Moscow, the “Gendai Guitar Hall” in Tokyo, and the “Concertgebouw” on Amsterdam.
Moreover, they have recorded in the studios of the radio stations Bayerischer Rundfunk and Südwestfunk and have made live recordings with the Hessischer Rundfunk and the Oesterreichischer Rundfunk. Gruber & Maklar held a scholarship at the Villa Musica of Mainz and were sponsored by Yehudi Menuhin´s „Live Music Now“.
The magazine „Guitar Review“ wrote about their concert at the Manhattan School of Music in December 2000: „…Their technique is spectacular, their musical understanding cannot be overstated, their ensemble with each other is outstanding and, as they proved in a magnificent evening of music on December 7th at the Manhattan School of Music a part of the Augustine Guitar Series, they deserve to be recognized as one of the finest guitar duos in the world.“
Besides their duo playing Christian Gruber and Peter Maklar also collaborate with other artists such as the Japanese mezzo-soprano Tomoko Ploner, the internationally renowned guitarists Tilman Hoppstock and Dimitri Illarionov, the Amadeus Guitar Duo, the Oboist Christoph Hartmann (Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra) or the violinist Key Märkl (Symphonic Orchestra of Bavarian Broadcast)
Various composers including Dusan Bogdanovic, Wulfin Lieske, Enjott Schneider and Atanas Ourkouzounov have written for the duo.Eight CD Recordings with Spanisch, South-American, contemporary and classical literature, as well as numerous editions of their own transcriptons (available from the publisher DOBERMAN-YPPAN/Canada) give evidence of the duo´s skills.