• New Music from Duo Mantar - Music from the Promised Land

    Duo Mantar - Music from the Promised Land

    Israeli mandolinist Jacob Reuven and American guitarist Adam Levin, collectively Duo Mantar, have announced a June 11 release for their album entitled Music from the Promised Land on the Naxos label.

    Duo Mantar is dedicated to representing the rich variety of music from Israel and to expanding the repertoire available for mandolin and guitar by actively commissioning the most sought after contemporary Israeli composers.

    Reuven is one of the one of the most sought-after virtuosos of his instrument and the combination of the mandolin and the guitar on the recording lends the album a one-of-a-kind sound that recalls folk, American Jazz, European klezmer traditions and Babylonian Jewry. Music from the Promised Land features world premieres by Jan Freidlin, Josef Bardanashvili, and Oren Lok in addition to world premiere arrangements of works by Marc Lavry, Paul Ben-Haim and Ittai Rosenbaum.

    Levin and Reuven began playing together in Fall 2017 and share a passion for Israeli Music, Hebrew and Jewish songs. Both of them are committed to expanding the repertoire available for mandolin and guitar by actively commissioning most sought after contemporary Israeli composers.


    From the recording, "Sonata for Mandolin and Guitar I. Fantasia." by Yehezkel Braun.

    About the album, Reuven said, "I'm incredibly excited to share the recording Music from the Promised Land because the album showcases with the utmost confidence a particular body of work with my dear musical partner, guitarist Adam Levin.

    "I believe with all of my heart that this is a timeless record with probing insights and questions, some of which still donít have answers. The record is a cultural and musical mosaic drawing upon 2000 years of Jewish history.

    "In researching the repertoire of violin (including Bach, Tchaikovsky, Brahms, Beethoven, Mozart, Vivaldi, Piazzolla, to name but a few) to determine how these violin works can be adapted for the mandolin, I have found a new direction in my career. This has allowed me to expand what was previously thought possible on my instrument and has helped me explore my own identity as well.

    "In this album, composers from all over Israel ask their own questions. You have Marc Lavry, who was writing music even before the country existed and Ben-Haim, who I feel is the Beethoven of Israel. Jan Freidlin is writing atonal music influenced by the music of Bartok next to one of the most tonal composers, Yehezkel Braun. Josef Bardanashvili's piece "Memories" combines images of Israel, a Bach chorale, and unison atonal voices. "Ahava," written by the young composer Oren Lok answers many questions about love. And, finally, Ittai Rosenbaum combines dance music with influences from jazz. I hope that people will enjoy the album as much as we enjoyed making it. There is nothing quite like the musical exploration of Israeli music for mandolin and guitar; we hope that the project sheds light on a sliver of the world over the past 75 years."

    Track Listing

    3 Jewish Dances, Op. 192 (Arr. G. Nestor for Mandolin & Guitar):

    • No. 1. Jewish Wedding Dance Ė Sher: Allegro molto
    • No. 2. Yemenite Wedding Dance: Andante
    • No. 3. Hora: Allegro viv

    3 Songs Without Words (arr. G. Nestor for Mandolin and Guitar)

    • I. Arioso
    • II. Ballad
    • III. Sephardic Melody

    Oriental Pantomime

    Mist over the Lake (Version for Mandolin & Guitar)

    Sonata for Mandolin and Guitar

    • I. Fantasia
    • II. Aria
    • III. Variazione

    The Memories


    Duet for Mandolin & Piano (Arr. G. Nestor for Mandolin & Guitar)

    Additional Information

    Comments 3 Comments
    1. Frankdolin's Avatar
      Frankdolin -
      Been a fan for years. Good stuff!
    1. ccravens's Avatar
      ccravens -
      Another great Naxos recording.

      Very nice.
    1. DavidKOS's Avatar
      DavidKOS -
      More wonderful music from the Israeli mandolin masters!