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have compositions that use ethnic musical themes?

(Multi-Ethnic Star Orchestra)

Statement of Purpose

Our Musicians | Future Plans | Performances
Our Audience
| Is MESTO Traditional?

MESTO was established to combine the traditions of many ethnic musical genres and those of Western classical traditions.
Los Angeles lends itself as one of the most logical choices of cities to host this unique orchestra.

Speaking from a musical perspective, MESTO focuses on fostering new genres of musical expressions that combine the essence of non-European traditions; namely, styles of music based on ethnic scales and rhythms.

The makeup of MESTO is within the scope of usual Western norms. Traditional ethnic (folk) instruments are incorporated with the symphony orchestra. Precedence for such arrangements has occasionally been established in the Far East, Asia, Latin America and many other parts of the globe. We wish to bring this tradition here.

Historically, symphony orchestras have employed non-Western instruments in compositions based on non-Western traditions. These innovations and deviations from traditions were written primarily by Western composers and performed for a Western audience.

MESTO collaborates with distinguished composers and performers from within the specific cultures.

Our Musicians

Our classically trained musicians are basically willing to explore the realm of new musical traditions. At this stage of its organization, the orchestra can only accommodate players who already have experience with orchestras. So far, MESTO is extremely fortunate to have attracted a talented group of musicians, including serious composers and arrangers in each of his/her area of expertise.

Our Music

MESTO focuses on performing and recording different styles, genres and subcultures of several music cultures: Arabic, Turkish, Greek, Sephardic, Romanian, Bulgarian, Armenian, etc. MESTO strives to employ those ethnic musical styles with old and traditional themes as much as possible in a symphonic form.

Future Plans

MESTO intends to continuously perform. In addition, recording is a byproduct of performance. Today, there are numerous venues and occasions for performance.

Los Angeles and the immediate area, which is home to about 12 million people, could possibly be considered a "country" in itself. We truly believe that we are blessed with artistic resources, both musically and ethnically here.


MESTO will give concerts that will present new compositions, old traditional tunes in new arrangements, works that feature ethnic instruments, voice accompaniment, dance and more.

Our Audience

There is a constant and growing demand for MESTO's repertoire as a rapidly swelling interest and appetite springs forth from local and international audiences. The request for more concerts and commercial recordings is on the rise. Audiences are increasingly attracted to the charming characteristics of our music's diversity.

Furthermore, there is another interesting change. Audiences from non-Western cultures have became increasingly interested in Western classical music. Many Arab countries such as Egypt, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and North Africa have their own orchestras that bring classical music to their audiences. Interestingly, these orchestras attract the young generation and many of them give sell-out concerts.

Is MESTO Traditional?

Yes and No. As previously mentioned, the makeup of the orchestra is not traditional in the sense that Western classical orchestras do not usually mix ethnic instruments with the instruments of the symphony orchestra. On the other hand, the traditional music ensembles do not normally employ the symphonic instruments.

We would like to see our orchestra embrace a non-traditional model and at the same time treat the traditional stylistic timbre with the highest degree of adherence to the 'authentic' style.

MESTO's potential is awesome and the need is great for the bridges MESTO builds to cross-cultural understanding with its multi-ethnic music, musicians and audience.

MESTO can make a difference

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