Presenter Testimony

"Culturally significant."— Bruce Halliday, Port Theatre, Nanaimo, BC, Canada

“A resurgent force … explodes with artistry, refinement, and excitement” — Yvon Shore, Hebrew Union College, Cincinnati OH

“I DARE any audience to NOT be swept away by this show." — Natalie Neuert, UVM Lane Series, Burlington VT

"...captivates the audience. The ensemble brings a vitality to the music that I hadn't experienced with other Sephardic artists." — Jordan Peimer, Skirball Cultural Center, Los Angeles, CA

"Our audience of (800) children was transfixed. I was spellbound. This is the kind of experience that can open your eyes and ears to possibilities never imagined... I asked the children as they were leaving the theatre after the concert how the experience had been for them. It was the first time I heard unanimous appreciation. If you are trying to open your audiences to new horizons, if you are trying to expose the arts to children or adults, if you seek a new experience for yourself, I highly recommend the Guy Mendilow Ensemble to you." — Chad Haight, Admiral Theatre, Bremerton, WA

"Magical! They performed superbly and let us dream throughout the Mediterranean world." — Peter Steinfeld, ACES Series, Buena Vista University, Storm Lake, IA

"…transports the listener to a place far removed from the concert hall or outreach service site." — Steven Schmidt, Riverside Concerts, Rochester, MN

"... a great evening of beautiful music and exceptional musicianship!"  — John Chicherio, Performing Arts Director, Huntington Summer Arts Festival, Huntington, NY

"The Guy Mendilow Ensemble brought the larger world to our rural community through their music, stories and conversations. Fantastic musicians yet they offer more than just music.  They offer insight into other cultures, languages and times." — Rita Collins, Sunburst Arts, Eureka, MT

"The Guy Mendilow Ensemble and their work is a vital and vibrant way to illustrate the possibilities of interfaith and intercultural cooperation. The fact that the band includes members from Israel and Palestine, North and South America makes their music a global experience that is helping to heal the world. They are among the finest musicians I have ever heard, and I would recommend them strongly to any university or college campus that cares about diversity, multiculturalism, interfaith cooperation and world peace." — Greg Mcgonigle, President of the National Association of College & University Chaplains; Tufts University, Medford, MA

 “’Diversity’ is one of our core values, and we wanted to offer a memorable opening event for the series. Attendance was far greater than we had anticipated. The audience enthusiastically demonstrated their appreciation for the performance and ninety-three percent of the evaluations rated the performance as 'excellent.' The combination of effective storytelling and mesmerizing music, all framed in the context of little-known history, was more powerful than we had imagined. The Ensemble also delivered an information-filled educational outreach session with band and choral high school students that generated a remarkable level of interest in both the music and the history it represented.  Many students stayed after the session to interact directly with the musicians and get pointers on their own musical aspirations.” — Karen M. Thorson, Sanders County Arts Council, Plains, MT

“The entire program was magical. The musicianship was top notch, the music beautiful and imaginative and the presentation was captivating.  The Guy Mendilow Ensemble provided a very memorable and warm experience. The [group] also provided a children’s program that was captivating.  The children were very involved, dancing, clapping and singing, the message was very positive and the music was wonderful.” — Lev Rothenberg, Director of Arts & Education, JCC Indianapolis, IN 

"The ensemble takes you on a tour through an almost lost world that is filled with stories, beautiful melodies, and traditions. Guy and his ensemble have a way of capturing this tradition while making it accessible and engaging for a contemporary audience. From small children to the elderly, the music has a broad appeal that reaches in a way that’s entertaining and enlightening. Simply said, you come to enjoy a concert, but the cultural experience and learning is much deeper. In October 2012, we presented the Tales From the Forgotten Kingdom CD release party in partnership with Learning From Performers at Harvard University. In July 2013 [we presented] the Ensemble at the inaugural Outside the Box, a city wide outdoor performing arts festival. In both cases Guy and his ensemble were clearly connected with the audiences, which were mesmerized. From his showmanship to his skill as a convener, teacher, and cultural explorer, Guy Mendilow is reviving an important culture though his music, one that I believe has much value throughout the world." — Laura Mandel, Director, New Center NOW, Boston, MA

“They were mesmerizing…Their musicianship, versatility, and originality was most impressive. Our audience left raving about their talent and the sound of their music.”  — Rich Warren, nationally syndicated broadcast, The Midnight Special/Folkstage, WFMT Chicago

“The group is truly a topflight ‘world music’ group …the Guy Mendilow Ensemble enthralled, educated and engaged the audiences with its artistic excellence. I would also add that, at this past year's First Night performance, the group demonstrated truly exceptional professionalism. Despite the bitterly cold, icy weather and a van transmission that failed midway along the trip from Boston area to NJ, they kept in touch and managed to arrive, set up and perform — with distinction — for the event. After 10 hours of harrowing travel, to deliver a beautiful performance which inspired a capacity crowd of over 400 people is testament to their dedication and remarkable professionalism. I recommend the group very highly and without reservation.”  — Dr. Lynn L. Siebert, Director of Arts Participation & Communications / Artistic Programmer, First Night Morris, Arts Council of the Morris Area, Morristown, NJ

"We brought the Guy Mendilow Ensemble to our congregation and the band had the exact effect for which we had hoped: our community turned out in droves, exceeding our own expectations, and they kept coming back for each successive program.  Guy was amazing — he is a terrific teacher and a wonderful collaborator.  We established goals in advance of the weekend and every single one was met.  I can strongly and enthusiastically recommend an Artist In Residence weekend with the Guy Mendilow Ensemble!"  — Bradley G. Levenberg, Rabbi, Temple Sinai, Atlanta, GA

“…one of the most memorable concerts I've attended in my seven years in Vermont. The Guy Mendilow Ensemble was an amazing musical experience that had people awed and grateful. I would highly recommend them not only as superb musicians and storytellers but also as a perfect bridge between Jewish and non-Jewish events. The turnout exceeded our expectation and included 75+ non-RJC-members, non-Jewish guests who came from near and far for this extraordinary group.” — Martha Molnar, Rutland Jewish Center, Rutland VT

“One of the most moving and exceptional nights of music I have ever had the privilege of experiencing… Being able to expose students and community members to such a diverse range of music is so important.” — Sharon Silverman, Assistant Director, Hillel at the University of Vermont

"In his masterly way, Guy Mendilow and his Ensemble combines teaching and entertainment with a soul." — Deborah Feinstein, President of the board of Directors,  The Vilna Shul,, Boston’s Center for Jewish Culture, Boston, MA

“From the moment they began, the children were mesmerized. Guy Mendilow is not only a talented musician, but a gifted educator as well. He could read the group perfectly and knew exactly what the students needed next. The other musicians in the group were equally talented and the whole group together was one of the best performances I have experienced in over 26 years of education.” — Tina Monroe, Principal, Indian Creek Elementary School, Cedar Rapids IA

Media Impact

"...music of hope and affirmation, sophisticated in its delivery but easily accessible to listeners anywhere." —Chicago Tribune

"An international tour de force." —Bethlehem Morning Call

"The Guy Mendilow Ensemble embodies world music at its best." —The Cedar Rapids Gazette

"One of the most ear-opening albums of the year. During the 1960s, Kaleidoscope featuring David Lindley stretched the boundaries of world music within a rock band about as far as they could be stretched, walking away with a reputation as heroes for sonic adventurers. The Guy Mendilow [Ensemble] may not be quite as rambunctious, but they are no less daring."—The Boomer's Guide to Music & News 

"One of Boston's most original world-music acts." —Boston Herald

"This isn't for quirky ears, it's for jaded ears that need to be shaken awake with something substantially different that keeps the interest on the beam throughout. Delightfully different, even when it seems like it might be familiar." —Midwest Record

"This is, to folk, what Bela Fleck is to Foggy Mountain Breakdown. This is unusual and exciting." —Philadelphia Folk Song Society

"Guy Mendilow is quickly developing a reputation as a masterful, deeply passionate and sincere performer." —Global Rhythm Magazine

"The glory of what [Mendilow] does is finding a common ground among different cultures. And that's what makes his music so exciting." — Jewish Advocate

"Auditory magic." — Wildy's World  

"They were mesmerizing... their musicianship, versatility, and originality was most impressive. Our audience left raving about their talent and the sound of their music." — Rich Warren, nationally syndicated broadcast, The Midnight Special/Folkstage, WFMT Chicago 

"A magical, shape-shifting world music quintet hailing from four countries...Often reminiscent of David Lindley's all-encompassing, stripped-gear approach to pan-genre explorations." — Iowa City Press-Citizen

"Vibrant musical storytelling awash with warm harmonies, captivating rhythms and rollicking, fast-paced vocal improvisations." — Cambridge Chronicle