Robert Mandel – organistrum
Judit Andrejszki – voice, clavisimbalum
Andrea Molnar – recorders
Zsolt Szabó – viéle
Zsolt Kaltenecker – electronic instruments
The ENSEMBLEMANDEL founded in 2014, aims to introduce diverse periods of music history and musical instruments and compare them. It also aims to create a new, contemporary music. Organologist and early music artist Robert Mandel is committed to writing new music, organising contests for composers, and publishing books and audio discs. The Ensemble varies from four to ten members. They combine analogue modular synthesizers with unique and rarely heard medieval instruments, such as the clavisimbalum, organistrum, viéle, and the fidel. It performs original works, as well as works specifically composed for the ensemble that mix contemporary music with old and new musical elements that enhance each other to create a new musical “sound direction”.
The ENSEMBLEMANDEL is unique not only in sound but also in appearance. It juxtaposes magnificent old, original musical instruments on stage with exciting-sounding modular, electronic musical instruments. We look at how to combine the spectrum of historical musical instruments with a range of electronic instruments. We want to square the circle by playing electronically with acoustic media and vice versa. The performance of the ENSEMBLEMANDEL is an exciting addition even to world-class music festivals and staged historical musical events. In such environments a real contrast is created by performing contemporary music on original historical instruments in addition to authentic, historical music performances. The music of the ENSEMBLEMANDEL could also be a highlight of both traditional and contemporary chamber music events. We are happy to perform in clubs, concert halls, museums, and churches, in short, anywhere where an audience is open to experimental and creative music.
After earning his degree in musical instrument making he received a scholarship from the German Music Council to study musical instrument restoration under Dr. John Henry van der Meer and Dr. Freidemann Hellwig in Nürnberg in the German National Museum (Germanisches Nationalmuseum). Mandel had the chance to spend a time in the famous musical instrument collection of the Paris Conservatory of Music (today in the Cité de la Musique) to study the original 18th century vielles. In 1988 he became the chief manager of the Interconcert’s “Musica Antiqua” department. In 1992 he founded his own company the Mandel Productions Limited Co. His solo bookings include the NBC Today Show and the WQXR “Listening Room” in New York City, the WFMT “Studs Terkel Show” in Chicago, the Berkeley Festival of Early Music and Exhibition in San Francisco, the Purcell Room in London, the BBC TV “Pebble Mill at One” show in Birmingham, the “Old Jaffa Chamber Music Festival” in Tel-Aviv, the Theatro Municipal in Rio de Janeiro, the Bregenzer Festspiele in Austria, the NDR Talk Show in Hamburg, the Cervantino Festival in Mexico City, the Sydney University in Australia, and the “Beyond 2000” show. His main fields of research are the 16- 17th century renaissance instrumental music, the 18th century French chamber music, the 19th century musical instrument inventions and instrument marvels and the 20th century electrophones. He has recently been decorated with the Knight’s Cross of the Order of the Hungarian Republic and the Hungaroton Classic Award.
Visions of Hildegard von Bingen
original medieval music and improvisations
“O ignee Spiritus”
“Item de virginibus”
Hildegard von Bingen (1098-1179) was probably one of the most influential women of her time. At the age of only fourteen, she entered the Disibodenberg monastery, where she would later become the prioress. In 1150, she founded her own convent in Rupertsberg near Bingen. Her intelligence, knowledge and many talents enabled her to excel in many areas. She wrote on medicine, science and religion and corresponded with important political and spiritual leaders of her time, including popes and emperors. She recorded her visions in the book Scivias and collected her texts on natural sciences and medicine between 1150 and 1160 in Physica and Causa et cure. Her beautiful music can be found in two books, the Riesencodex that is kept in Wiesbaden and a manuscript in possession of Dendermonde Abbey. (from AMUZ festival booklet)