The London Mandolin Ensemble was founded in 2012. In previous years existed an earlier London Mandolin Ensemble, but for many years there was not much mandolin ensemble music in London.
London Mandolin Ensemble is a small chamber orchestra of around a dozen musicians and conductor. Our members are keen plucked string players from London and the surrounding areas.
We are pleased to have revived, in name at least, the original London Mandolin Ensemble,
which first met in Petit France and then Pimlico, London, in the early 1970s. Members of this group included Paul Marquis, who studied and worked with virtuoso mandolinist Hugo D’Alton at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, and the British composer Eileen Packenham.
Our repertoire covers a wide range of classical music, from early music to contemporary works. Instrumentation is based on the Romantic quartet tradition of mandolin 1, mandolin 2, octave mandola and guitar.
On Tuesday we have visited the rehearsal of the London Mandolin Ensemble. We rehearsed the mandolin concerto by Hasse, the Canon by Pachelbl and started with a piece by Eileen Packenham with a lot of chromatic scales. The rehearsal was conducted by Travis Finch who has studied with Alison Stephens. Travis does also organize a regular workshop for the mandolin players in London.
In recent years the London Mandolin Festival has been organized every year. There are some videos from the performances of the London Mandolin Festival at youtube:
Playlist London Mandolin Festival
Back in 1955 and 1949
The BMG has organized Banjo and Mandolin Festivals in the 1940s and 1950s, British Pathe has two short videos about the festivals of 1949 and 1955 – you can see many anjo players, but also some mandolins:
Plenty of Pluck (1951)
Musicians of Britain’s Banjo, Mandolin and Guitar Clubs are arriving at Red Lion Square with instruments. An orchestra plays ‘Mind the Guns’ conducted by Phil Barker.
Music Festival on Strings (1949)
Participants are arriving, later a big Orchestra is playling.
Back in 1903
In 1903 a big mandolin orchestra has played in Queen’s Hall and in the Crystal Pallace. The following postcard shows”The Largest Mandoline Band in the World”
On the website of the London Mandolin Ensemble you can find additional information about the members and the conductor of the ensemble, about the rehearsals and a lot of more interesting information about the mandolin.
Youtube Channel Travis Finch: http://www.youtube.com/user/ttamsivart/videos
About Travis Finch: http://www.chadlingtonfestival.org.uk/artists/finch/
Website of the BMG: http://www.banjomandolinguitar.org/