Marilynn on Mandolin #12 Sept/Oct 2005


so I’ve been writing this for 2 years. Wow. Read on stalwart mando-fans!


It’s happening this week-end, and it’s supposed to be beautiful weather. We’re staying in ocean-side cottages in Sandwich MA, and we get to play mandolin all week-end. What could be better? If you haven’t signed up yet, there’s still time to change your plans and do so. Sign up online – I’ll be directing an all-mandolin Brazilian/classical ensemble and have arranged quartets by Corelli and Purcell, and a very cool choro by Chiquinha Gonzaga. There’s ensembles for jazz, folk, and bluegrass too. Radim Zenkl is coming out from California to play and teach. I’m playing in the Friday concert with Jim Dalton, & Saturday with Enigmatica, and also sitting in with the New England Mandolin Ensemble, who let me play John Coltrane! – How cool is that? I’ll also give classes on Bach, tremolo, and choro. A good time will definitely be had by all!


I recently heard from Max Williams, this year’s AMGuSS scholarship student who was full of exciting news. He successfully auditioned for the University of Florida Brazilian music ensemble, led by the head of their ethnomusicology department. “I know that without my time at AMGuSS, I couldn’t have pulled this off… It has given me the confidence to pursue musical opportunities that I never would have explored.” And that’s really AMGuSS in a nutshell.


The mandolin method progresses, but has hit the stonewall of back-to-university, so is unfortunately on the back burner for a bit. But the photos are taken, the CD is recorded and the editing is about to begin. Hopefully it will be off to Mel Bay before autumn turns chilly.


I get to play David Hahn with Bob Sullivan in his New England Conservatory faculty recital at Jordan Hall on November 6th. Bob is such an interesting musician and always has a great eclectic program. This is not to be missed. I’m also playing a benefit for “Reach Out & Read” at the Providence Athenaeumon Nov. 4th. They’re a really worthwhile organization who organize a fun event with music, books, and food. I’ve got Andromeda, a very cool Boston quartet with accordion, violin, bass, and the guitar/mandolin/banjo of Adam Larrabee coming to RWU on October 23rd, Sunday, at 2:00. Great music and free admission. Gigs at home and in Ohio are in the works for the winter, so check the calendar soon for morelistings.


I sent my new Mandolin Magazine column in, and the survey of music history moves on to the Classical Era. The musical example is a lead-sheet version of Beethoven’s “Sonatina in C Major” for mandolin. I’m starting a new column for CMSA’s “Mandolin Journal’in the next issue, a “Teachers’ Spotlight” to give information on CMSA mandolin teachers around the country – what they teach, what they play, and what they think about the mandolin. The first issue features Toni Nigrelli, Nicola Swinburne, Charlie Rappaport, and Rich DelGrosso, who together have been teaching for well over a century!


I’d love to hear from you. If you know anyone who would like to get this update, have them send me their email. And thanks for reading!

The next issue of “MARILYNN ON MANDOLIN” will be out in November 2005. So enjoy the last daysof baseball (Go Sox!) as you fall back into the school year. And keep your mandolin handy – great ideas just seem to drop from the sky as the weather cools down.


Posted October 5th, 2005. Bookmark the permalink. Both comments and trackbacks are currently closed.
  • “Marilynn Mair has always had the keen ability to balance classical mandolin traditions and repertoire, while constantly breaking new musical ground…a superb and versatile mandolinist and composer.”

    – – Butch Baldassari, Mandolin Magazine (USA)

    “She’s a fabulous player with a wonderfully clear and lyrical sound.”

    – The Ottawa Citizen (Canada)

    “The final repeat of the melody transmitted a strong feeling of peace and tenderness that escaped no one in the audience. It is this sensitivity and subtleness that characterized the overall performance.”

    – Brian Hodel, Guitar Review (USA)

    “Mair is unstoppable… capable of evoking any landscape, past or present, you’d care to conjure.”

    – Mike Caito, Providence Phoenix (USA)

    “Marilynn Mair performs Brazilian mandolin music… she plays the mandolin as an instrument for all occasions.”
    – Vaughn Watson, The Providence Journal (USA)

    Marilynn Mair on mandolin…touches the deepest and most engaging reaches of the ancient and passionate ‘Latin soul’.

    – Carlos Agudelo, Billboard Magazine

    “Mair displays an exceptionally gifted approach to this music, using her formidable mandolin technique with grace and sensitivity… It’s the next best thing to a trip to Rio.”

    – David McCarty, Mandolin Magazine (USA)

    “Marilynn Mair lives up to her reputation as an excellent mandolinist, with clear tone, a beautiful tremolo, and creative expressiveness.”

    – Zupfmusik Magazin (Germany)

    “Mair travels by mandolin to Brazil and brilliance… her commitment to the music shines through.”

    – Rick Massimo, The Providence Journal

    “A sparkling concert… absolutely brilliant!”

    – Guitar Magazine (England)

    “Stepping back to the 18th-century masterworks gave her the opportunity to highlight her technique with a fresh light… her playing is thoughtful, vibrant and a delight to listen to.”

    — Terence Pender, Mandolin Quarterly (USA)

    “Smudging the lines between folk and classical is an intrepid endeavor… Mair’s a superb mandolin player who has brought the instrument to unexpected places…”

    – Jim Macnie, The Providence Phoenix (USA)

    “A lovely concert! We estimate your spell-bound and enthusiastic audience at close to 1800 people…”

    – Lincoln Center Out-Of-Doors (USA)

    “A brilliant concert from beginning to end…The performance was extraordinary.”
    – La Rioja (Spain)

    “Marilynn Mair acquits herself very well indeed, a most accomplished player, able to deal with the many intricacies the repertoire demands of her.”

    – Chris Kilvington, Classical Guitar (England)

    “Marilynn Mair é uma bandolinista americana de formação erudita”

    — Paulo Eduardo Neves, Agenda do Samba Choro (Brasil)

    Bring a talented ensemble of gifted musicians together playing some of the great concertos and chamber music pieces of the 1700s, present the extraordinary classical mandolinist Marilynn Mair front and center, and you have a rare combination of the right musicians performing the right music at the right time.

    – David McCarty, Mandolin Magazine (USA)