about al-andalus ensemble performing at the international festival of the oud, tetuan, morocco, oud, flamenco guitar, violin

About Al-Andalus

"Sounds simultaneously foreign and familiar, different styles working so beautifully together!" -The National, Abu Dhabi United Arab Emirites.

Historically, Al-Andalus refers to Spain from 711-1492 AD. During these eight centuries, Andalusian Spain witnessed a cultural melding between Africa, the East and the West, as well as among Jews, Christians & Muslims. An outstanding model of inclusion and tolerance, Al-Andalus was renown for the synergy of diverse cultures that resulted in remarkable artistic, scientific and cultural enlightenments. The period of Al-Andalus produced profound and far-reaching consequences, setting the stage for the European Renaissance. It provides an exemplary historical model to rise above modern-day conflicts and challenges. The Al-Andalus Ensemble locates its creative impetus in the rebirth of Al-Andalus in todays cultural landscape.

The Al-Andalus Ensemble has pursued a singular artistic vision reminding us that the intricate interplay of diverse voices is the geography of cultural harmony. Embracing the scholarly approach of Early Music and the traditionalism of World Music, this collaboration yields a vigorous new hybrid: a contemporary World-chamber ensemble which also skillfully creates new and original music, retaining the essential soul and spirit of the Arab, North African and European sources while fearlesslessly exploring new territory.

Selected Past Performances

Kuala Lumpur Twin Towers Petronas; International Festival of World Music. Las Rozas, Madrid, Spain; International Festival of the Oud. Tetuan, Morocco; International Center for Performance Studies. Tangier, Morocco; Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Voices of Reconciliation. Portland, Oregon USA; Veranos de la Villa. Madrid, Spain; XII Ciclo Musica de las Tres Culturas. Cordoba, Spain; Festival du Monde Arabe de Montreal. Quebec, Canada; International Festival of Arab Music. Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates; American Legation Museum. Tangier, Morocco; Guild of American Luthiers. Tacoma, Washington; Syracuse University. Syracuse, New York; Cathedral Park Jazz Festival. Portland, Oregon USA; Centro Cultural La Torre De Guadarrama. Madrid, Spain; Handelsbeurs. Gent, Belgium; Institut du Monde Arabe. Paris, France; Parkstad Limburg Stadium. East of Limburg, Belgium; Centro Cultural La Torre de Guadarrama, Spain; Egyptian Embassy. Madrid, Spain; National Building Museum, Freer-Sackler Gallery, Smithsonian Museum. Washington. DC; Toledo School of Translation. Toledo, Spain; Circulo de Bellas Artes. Madrid, Spain; Festival del Mediterraneo. Seville, Spain; Festival des Cordes Pincées de Rabat. Rabat, Morocco; Embassy of Egypt. Madrid, Spain; Festival de Tres Culturas. Murcia, Spain; Al-Andalus Festival. Washington, DC; Levantine Festival. Ford Amphitheatre. Los Angeles, California; Embassy of Jordan. Washington, DC; ICA Folkfest. Victoria BC,...

“Much of what has been forgotten by Europe is being brought back by the Banzi’s in the sensitive and evocative music of Al-Andalus. Hands down the best concert this reviewer has heard!” -Dick Cline, On Time.

Learn more about Al-Andalus historically in this fascinating article by one of the Al-Andalus Ensemble's favorite authors, Maria Rosa Menocal "Culture in the Time of Tolerance: Al-Andalus as a Model for Our Time" (Yale Law School Digital Commons)