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mandolin ensemble

Berkeley Mandolin Ensemble

The Berkeley Mandolin Ensemble was a classical mandolin ensemble. The ensemble travelled to Germany for the German Zupfmusikfest in Bonn in 1978. It was also part of the production of the CD “Rudy Cipolla – Mandolin Maestro”. It did travel again to Germany in 1982 for another Zupfmusikfest.

Program of the concert at the Zupfmusikfest in Bonn, 1982 (Thanks to Sheri Mignano-Crawford for this picture)

Kennet Frankel who played mandolin, mandola and mandocello in this group between 1976 and 1979. He has made available some recordings by the Berkeley Mandolin Ensemble on his website.

1976-1979 Berkeley Mandolin Ensemble

After my mandolin quartet, I played mandolin, mandola, and mandocello with this wonderful group in concerts, on radio, and on TV. I traveled with them to Germany as the only USA representative at the 1976 German Zupfest.

The Berkeley Mandolin Ensemble played pieces by German composers Konrad Wölki and Kurt Schwaen, transcriptions of lute music, pieces by Ludwig van Beethoven, Ragtimes by Scott Joplin and more.

Rudy Cipolla recording

The ensemble was part of the Rudy Cipolla album The World of Rudy Cipola which was recorded in 1982 and 1983.

Interview 1987

The Berkeley Mandolin Ensemble with Owen Hartford and Rudy Cipolla gave an interview with live performances in 1987 which can be found in the Rudy Cipolla archive by Sheri Mignano-Crawford. Discussion in the Mandolin Cafe with link to a collection of recordings and sheet music by Rudy Cipolla. The ensemble plays works by Vivaldi, Owen Hartford and Rudy Cipolla.

Radim Zenkl and Sheri Mignano-Crawford played with the ensemble in 1989, there is a picture of the ensemble from 1989 on Radim Zenkls website.

Additional Information

Website: http://www.kenfrankel.com/Music/BME/BME.html

History: http://www.kenfrankel.com/music%20history.html

Radim Zenkl – Photos – includes a photo of the Berkeley Mandolin Ensemble from 1989.

domra

3rd Eurasia Competition for Russian Folk Instruments

Recently I have discovered videos from the 3rd Eurasia Competition for players od Russian folk instruments.

The performances of Ganyushkina Svetlana Vasilievna (Jekaterinburg) Domra-Alt and Unguryan Maria Alexandrovna (Jekaterinburg) Domra have been published in the youtube channel of the pianist Kristina Shestakova.

Ganyushkina Svetlana Vasilievna (Jekaterinburg) Alt-Domra – 3rd Price

III International Competition of Performers on Russian Folk Instruments “Eurasia – III”
Round II:
M. Bronner “Pro et contra”
A. Byzov “Gossip”
A. Tsygankov “Jewish melodies”
Ganyushkina Svetlana – domra-alto
Shestakova Christina – piano
10/27/2019

III International Competition of Performers on Russian Folk Instruments “Eurasia-III”
Round I:
J. Haydn Concerto for cello and orchestra C-dur III movement
S. Rachmaninov “Vocalise”
M. Gorobtsov Meditations on Eurasian Themes “Journey to the Sunrise”
Ganyushkina Svetlana – domra-alto
Shestakova Christina – piano
24.10.2019

Unguryan Maria Alexandrovna got the 1st price with her fantastic performance on the domra.

Unguryan Maria Alexandrovna (Jekaterinburg) Domra – 1st Price

III International Competition of Performers on Russian Folk Instruments “Eurasia”
Round II:
B. Matryashin “Improvisation and Toccata”
V. Ivko “Concert-Toccata”
Unguryan Maria – domra
Shestakova Christina – piano
10/26/2019

III International Competition of Performers on Russian Folk Instruments “Eurasia”
Round I:
J.F. Ramo “Chicken”
I. Tamarin Concerto for domra and orchestra II movement “Intermezzo”
E. Podgaits Concert “Seasons in Moscow” IV part “Winter”
Unguryan Maria – domra
Shestakova Christina – piano
10/25/2019

Additional Information

Website: https://konkurs-eurasia.ru/

In the youtube channel of Kristina Shestakova you can find more domra videos: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCea5RImZ713RVcY7BCXpM9A/videos

historical recordings

Rudy Cipolla – An American Original

I am currently preparing a program with Italian mandolin music. On my search for more music I have found some tunes by Rudy Cipolla and started listening to music by Rudy Cipolla.

The music from the CD Rudy Cipolla – Portrait of an American Original (Acoustic Disc) is available as youtube playlist and also on Spotify.

Playlist Rudy Cipolly – Portrait of an American Original

Spotify Playlist – Rudy Cipolla – Portrait of an American Original

One of my favorite tunes is the Study for two mandolins played by Radim Zenkl, a beautiful little duet.

I have made my own transcription of this duet and now have my own video:

This is another study for two mandolins – this one was recorded by Carlo Aonzo, David Grisman and Beppe Gambetta on the album “Traversata”

In the Mandolin Cafe you can find additional information in a discussion with pictures and also a link to a shared Dropbox folder by Sheri Mignano-Crawford with recordings from the Rudy Cipolla Memorial Tribute Concert and sheet music transcriptions of many Rudy Cipolla compositions.

Additional information

Discussion in the Mandolin Cafe with link to a collection of recordings and sheet music by Rudy Cipolla

Bio (Acoustic Disc)

Portrait of an American Original (Acoustic Disc)

Rudy Cipolla – Portrai of an American Original (discogs) with detailed information about all the tracks

LP – The World of Rudy Cipolla (Discogs)

Australia

Enoggera Ensemble

I have just discovered the videos with the Enoggera Ensemble from Brisbane, Australia. This Classical Folk Quartet is composed of four instrumentalists playing different kind of guitars, ukuleles, banjos and also mandolin. The repertoir includes music that was popular and has been played in Australia at the end of the 19th century, including Ragtimes, Dances, Serenades or popular pieces for the piano.

The Enoggera Ensemble recreates Australian colonial music for a modern audience, led by guitarist Duncan Gardiner with mandolinist Marissa Carrol, banjoist Joel Woods, and guitarist Dominic Ward

Duncan Gardiner is a guitarist, composer and teacher. He is researching about the history of the guitar in Queensland from 1842 until World War Two.

The Enoggera Ensemble has many great videos of their repertoir, including some complete concerts from last year. I have compiled the best videos in my playlist.

Playlist Enoggera Ensemble

Additional Information

Interview: https://www.thecreativeissue.com.au/day-in-the-life-duncan-gardiner-from-enoggera-ensemble/

TCI: What is the story behind Enoggera Ensemble?

DG: I started my research in 2017, looking into the history of the guitar in Queensland, since earliest colonisation. I was organising some concerts of historical guitar music in Queensland. Looking through the newspapers from the late 1800s to the 1920s-30s, I found the guitar was often paired with other plucked instruments, like mandolin and banjo. Queensland was home to many, like 20 or 30 or more large banjo, mandolin and guitar (or BMG) clubs, mandolin orchestras, guitar ensembles, and even Hawaiian groups with ukuele.

I wanted to put on a recital of music for guitar in an ensemble setting. I knew many guitarists, and I found someone who could play the banjo and mandolin, so I gathered the group together. We just went to do one concert, but it was so successful that everyone was telling us to form an established group and keep going. So, that’s basically how it started.

Website Duncan Gardiner