Mandopolis 12 scordatura fantasies for mandolin

As a composer, guitarist and great mandolin aficionado, it has only been a question of time until I started to engage intensively in the composing of mandolin music. Over the last three years, the sublime collaboration with musician and mandolinist Annika Hinsche brought forth a veritable oeuvre for the mandolin. It includes my études Fingerfood I & II, Mare Sonata for mandolin and guitar, two orchestral works for
plucked orchestra, as well as Mandopolis, a work cycle for mandolin in various scordatura. From beginner level up to high concert level there is now a broad spectrum of contemporary mandolin music available. Very special thanks go to Annika Hinsche, who collaborated on these projects with the utmost devotion and enthusiasm, and who inspired me for the work at hand.Thanks to Fabian Hinsche for his great support as supervisor of the recordings and for the text in the booklet of this CD.

Mandopolis, here we come                                                                                                                 Jürg Kindle

Each of the 12 pieces of "Mandopolis" has such non-everyday characteristics, as the strings of the mandolin, which are usually tuned in pairs and in fifths, have to be retuned in each piece. 10 different tunings can be found in the musical deities of "Mandopolis". A scordatura, the retuning of the strings on the mandolin, is unusual. The best-known work in classical literature for an instrument that uses a scordatura is certainly Heinrich Ignaz Franz Biber's famous "Rosenkranz-Sonaten" for violin solo from the 17th century.
The violin presents itself in numerous, in each case new basic tunings, which always set different overtones and thus other atmospheres.

The classical mandolin, which is tuned in violin tuning, uses scordaturas extremely rarely. But if applied, a scordaturahas a decisive advantage over the violin: its double strings. If these usually pair-tuned strings are now individually tuned, they cannot produce only up to 4 but up to 8 different notes, even two more than the scordatura-proven guitar. In this respect, Kindle realizes a potential that neither the violin nor the guitar possess. But even in those movements that use 4, 5 or 6 different open strings, the mandolin in “Mandopolis” sounds novel, unknown, not commonplace, as it is said about the appearance of the gods in the dust of everyday life. The complexity of the sound increases with the scordaturas, and the play with the pick occasionally demands a new form of precision of the right hand, as in some of the pieces one string sounds different than its neighbor when played in up- or down-stroke. A common down-stroke on two strings creates unusual sound effects when the strings are tuned differently. Kindle uses this effect skillfully to make the instrument sound new and sometimes "divine".
So to speak, a city like "Mandopolis" has never existed it in the world of the classical mandolin before. Through this, and through his contemporary musical language, which also includes echoes of Rock & Pop, Jazz, Latin and Blues, Kindle manages to make the images of the gods appear very lively again where they may have been dusted by the classical educational canon of the museums.

 Dr. Fabian Hinsche



Mandopolis sheet music and CD


Mandopolis Vol. I fantasias 1-3

EK 45

Mandopolis Vol.II fantasias 4-6

EK 46

Mandopolis Vol.III fantasias 7-9

EK 47

Mandopolis Vol.IV fantasias 10-12   EK 48



the scordaturas (tuning)

Ares preview

Artemis preview

Hephaistos preview


Jürg Kindle in Zakynthos, works on Mandopolis