Manolis Stagkis - 1940
Manolis Stagakis was born at a Cretan village called Archontiki, close to the town of Rethymno up until after World War II in 1945. He was a very well known and respected Lyra artist (Lyraris). The problem was that the Lyras and instruments of his time could not meet his requirements, so he decided to build a Lyra of his own.
That is how everything started, leading to 3 generations of “Stagakis” Lyra constructors. In 1945 he moves to Rethymno and opens the first Lyra workshop in town. The workshop was located at Dimakopoulou Street close to the Old Town of Rethymno and remained open up until 1995, when it was relocated. Nowadays our workshop is located at Kastellakia (a suburb about 2 km from Rethymno town center).
Michalis and Dimitris Stagakis
At this point we must outline that after 1995 some people tried to take advantage of Stagakis name and fame, by opening a new workshop at the same building. That workshop is in no way related to Stagakis Lyra workshop.Around 1970 the workshop was directed by Michalis Stagakis (son of Manolis).
Michalis contributed greatly to the technique and of Lyra making. In 1978 traveled to Venice (Italy) where in collaboration with the famous instrument strings factory DOGAL he produced his own Lyra strings, which can be found globally as “Lyra di Creta” and are now a standard in Lyra construction all over Greece.
Unfortunately, Michalis Stagakis died unexcpectingly in 1995 and the continuous production of Lyras was disrupted for a short period of time. Today in charge of the “Stagakis” workshop is Manolis Stagakis Jr. (son of Michalis and grandson of Manolis). The third generation of traditional Cretan Lyra makers.
1995 till today
Manolis Stagakis Jr. attempts to combine the knowledge and knowhow of the two previous generations.With the help of his grandfather and his uncle (Dimitris) who is a famous Violin constructor, he is already a well known and respected Cretan Lyra maker.
The secrets and recipes of traditional Lyra construction remain in the Stagakis family until today.
That is why our Lyras are constantly of the highest quality. Most of modern Lyra artists in Greece prefer & trust the Lyras that Manolis produces.