Massachusetts
Profile Type: Artist
NEFA Grant Recipient
Artist
Guy Mendilow Ensemble

Guy Mendilow Ensemble (GME) weaves moving stories through riveting scores, narration and theatrically projected sand animation. GME productions center on true tales of people’s choices and chances as they navigate thresholds, whether personal or historical. GME is especially intrigued by decisions of generosity and grace despite upheaval.

Production examples include:

  • The Forgotten Kingdom: A child’s memories of an unraveling, multi-ethnic Ottoman world splintering into ethnic nation-states. Breathtaking landscapes of sand give a dreamlike, intensely emotional quality to an adventure that “explodes with artistry, refinement, and excitement” (Hebrew Union College, OH).
  • Radio Play(s) Series: Like a stage-performed podcast, each episode unpacks a timely theme through a collection of stories. Co-directed with spoken word artist Regie Gibson, Radio Play(s) addresses mounting civic/racial tensions in the US.
  • Around the World in Song Series: Joyous, interactive episodes nurture children’s musicianship and multicultural inspiration.  Perhaps above all, Around the World in Song gives young people the experience of being listened to by grownups. As pedagogically thoughtful as it is uplifting, Around the World in Song is built on principles of Dalcroze Education and Fred Rogers’ philosophy.

With the leadership of artistic director/composer Guy Mendilow, GME’s team is "an international tour de force” (Bethlehem Morning Call) of world-class artists, writers, composers and theatrical designers from the Middle East, Europe, South and North America now living mainly in Boston, MA and New York, NY. Musically, GME calls on expertise with a broad palette. The bittersweet rawness of Tango; the fire and intricacy of multilayered percussion; gorgeous vocal harmonies and other pan-cultural influences layer over the harmonic roots of Western classical music. GME’s scripts are inspired by the dreamlike qualities of Pablo Neruda and Michael Ondaatje, and by Dan Carlin’s vivid restoration of faded historical memory. Visually, evocative lighting and set pieces frame flowing sand narratives and locations. Theatrical editing and projection techniques enable the pre-recorded sand animations to follow live performance of script and score even when pacing varies as artists respond to each theatre’s audience.

GME operates on the conviction that moving, multidisciplinary stories can be powerful agents for conversation: A coming together to listen to one another and share our stories in the service of exploring who we are and who we wish to be, building an understanding of how the other has come to see what they see, believe what they believe and know what they know. When equipped with well-crafted questions —fueled by genuine curiosity and inviting honesty, dignity and aliveness —conversation promotes a willingness to be vulnerable; to be surprised; to NOT have quick answers; to suspend assumptions; to probe ambiguity. Conversation is not necessarily about agreement, or common ground on specific issues, other than the meta-issue that we are humans worthy of being heard and understood.

GME is a recipient of multiple funding awards from the National Endowment for the Arts, The Boston Foundation, the New England Foundation for the Arts and Western Arts Alliance on the basis of artistry, cultural preservation and the strengthening of communities through the arts.

GME specializes in designing in-depth community engagement and collaborative residencies for performing arts organizations like Celebrity Series of Boston. Mendilow’s principles for residency design, implementation and evaluation are based on Dalcroze Education and presented at conferences like the Association of Performing Arts Professionals.

 

Guiding Principles

This framework summarizes the means and aims in most of GME’s work

 

GME’s 3C’s: Craft, Connection, Curiosity

  • Through efficacy in Craft, we move people.
  • By moving people we inspire personal Connection with what previously seemed unrelated or irrelevant.
  • Connection drives Curiosity, opening opportunities for learning.

Curiosity, directed by deft facilitation, expands willingness to explore, listen generously, and develop understanding of experiences, relationships and perspectives different from one’s own.

 

Why This Matters

  • Sustained, deepened inquiry strengthens awareness of often-tacit assumptions about how we relate to the world and to one another.
  • It is more difficult to dismiss and dehumanize someone once we have heard their story, and have developed an understanding for their beliefs and viewpoints, even if we sharply disagree.

Over time, this increases informed agency in Choices we make.

 

The process is dynamic and multi-directional.

Additional Links: 
From tailor-made residencies to public lectures, school workshops, university masterclasses and choral /string collaborations, the Guy Mendilow Ensemble delivers high caliber, pedagogically sound educational programs for diverse audiences.
Learn about all productions offered by GME
A one-stop-shop for promoting the Ensemble's shows — fliers, postcards, press releases and more!
Media & Presenter Testimony
Siegel Artist Management
Young Audiences of Massachusetts
Sand Story from The Forgotten Kingdom — Sand Stories. Premiered by the National Endowment for the Arts
Sand Story from The Forgotten Kingdom — Sand Stories.
Residency Sample sponsored by Celebrity Series of Boston

I Have Worked With

  • September 2014 to May 2019

    Guy Mendilow Ensemble is an artist with Celebrity Series' Neighborhood Arts program. Through this program, the Ensemble presents workshops and assemblies in Boston neighborhood schools; collaborates with youth choirs and string ensembles, creating tailor-made arrangements for each group; gives several free community concerts in select Boston neighborhoods. 

    The Ensemble has worked with Celebrity Series since 2014. In 2015, Guy Mendilow was invited to join Celebrity Series' Community Engagement Advising Committee.

  • May 2019

    A performance of The Forgotten Kingdom, sponsored by the Washington Jewish Music Festival

  • April 2019

    A performance of The Forgotten Kingdom

Pages

  • NEFA Grantee
  • Artist

Contact Information

First Name: 
Jennifer
Job Title/Position: 
Agent / Manager
Physical Address: 
17 Atherton Street
Roxbury, MA 02119
Last Name: 
Morris
Phone: 
+1 (570) 258-5700

About

Profile Type: 
Artist
Primary Discipline: 
Multi-Disciplinary
Additional Disciplines: 
Humanities - General
Humanities - Cultural Heritage
Humanities - Linguistics
Multi-Disciplinary
Music - Children's
Music - Choral
Music - Composition
Music - Ethnic / World
Music - Traditional
Theater - Storytelling
Year Founded: 
2004
Populations Served: 
Adults
Elders
Families
General Public
Immigrant Populations
Nonprofits
School Groups
Teens
Languages Available: 
Arabic
Hebrew
Spanish
Institution/Business Type: 
Performing Groups
Activities and Services: 
Arts for Social Change / Creative Activism
Arts Instruction / Lessons
Creation of a Work of Art (Including Commissions)
Curriculum Development
Performance / Concert / Reading
Preservation / Conservation
Professional Development / Training
Residency - Community
Residency - In School
Residency - Other
Workshops / Demonstrations / Master Class
Events Per Year: 
75
Seasons Active: 
Spring
Fall
Winter
Geographic Reach: 
National
International

Affiliations and Accomplishments

Education: 
Master of Music, Longy School of Music, Cambridge, MA, 2007
Dalcroze Education Certificate, Longy School of Music, Cambridge, MA, 2007
Bachelor of Arts, Oberlin College, Oberlin, OH, 1999
Candidate for Dalcroze License (highest degree obtainable in USA, COVID19 postponement to 2021), Dalcroze School of the Rockies, Denver, CO
Awards: 
National Endowment for the Arts, Art Works 2016 & 2019
The Boston Foundation, Live Arts Boston (2016, 2017, 2018)
Twice voted Boston's Best World Music Poll, Boston Phoenix Best Music Awards
Western Arts Federation Tour West (2015, 2016, 2017)
Sparkplug Foundation, 2020
City of Boston, Mayor’s Office of the Arts, Opportunity Fund 2017, 2019
Arts Midwest Touring Fund, 2011
Dalcroze Society of America, 2017, 2018, 2019
Jewish Community Association of North America Making Music Happen Centennial Grant, 2017
City of Boston, Mayor’s Office of the Arts, COVID Relief Fund, 2020
I am a NEFA Grant Recipient

Accessibility of Services

Access accommodations for people who are blind, partially sighted, and have low vision
Access accommodations for people who are Deaf and hard-of-hearing
Most organizations engaging GME are non-profit and required to be ADA accessible. Beginning as an educator in 1996, Guy Mendilow has worked with special needs children and directed a music therapy program for severely handicapped adults, and is sensitive to program constituent needs. Program planning starts with listening to those working directly with intended participants. Where needed, GME modifies its approaches to serve participants needs. A common example is GME’s adaptation of its presentation to be sensory-friendly for students from diverse ability backgrounds at Boston’s Henderson Inclusion School. GME works with ASL interpreters and large-print materials and will add audio/video descriptions to virtual programs, as needed.

I am a Touring Artist

I am NEST eligible
Technical Requirements: 
https://www.guymendilowensemble.com/stage-plots-technical-riders
Fee Range Minimum: 
$5,000
Fee Range Maximum: 
$20,000
State of Residence: 
Massachusetts
Minimum Number of Performers: 
3
Maximum Number of Performers: 
6

I am a Teaching Artist

Teaching Settings: 
Arts and Cultural Center / Venue
Community Site / Center
Corporate Business
Private Studio
School / University
Subject Areas: 
Arts Integration - Communications
Arts Integration - Foreign Languages
Arts Integration - History and Social Science
Music
Ages Served: 
Elementary School-age
Middle School-age
High School-age
College-Age
Adults
Seniors
Certifications / Training: 
Master of Music, Longy School of Music, Cambridge, MA, 2007
Dalcroze Education Certificate, Longy School of Music, Cambridge, MA, 2007
Candidate for Dalcroze License (highest degree obtainable in USA, COVID19 postponement to 2021), Dalcroze School of the Rockies, Denver, CO
Fee Range Minimum: 
$600
Fee Range Maximum: 
$7,000