Ensemble Almara
Early music reinterpreted with enthusiasm & virtuosity


Almara is an early music ensemble

It was founded by Elisabeth Pawelke during her studies at the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis. The ensemble's musical focus is on the secular repertoire of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance with which the musicians dealt intensively bringing it to life with great enthusiasm and virtuosity. 

The musicians studied at the universities of music in Basle, The Hague and New York, and worked with renowned ensembles and orchestras for early music. 2009 saw the publication of the first CD "OutrosAmores" which has the various aspects of love and veneration in the Middle Ages for a theme, poetically reflected in the medieval compositions. In 2016 the ensemble recorded two pieces from the so-called Schedel Songbook for the Bavarian Administration of Palaces, Gardens and Lakes which since that time can be listened to in the Cadolzburg Historical Museum. The ensemble's new album "Carmina Predulcia" is dedicated to this Songbook and was released by the label Naxos on November 2020.

The Ensemble

Elisabeth Pawelke
Voice, harp

Birgit Muggenthaler-Schmack
Recorders, bagpipes

Sabine Kreutzberger
Viola da gamba, vielle

Sascha Gotowtschikow

Christoph Eglhuber
Lutes, salterio


Almara in the South German Newspaper!

The Ensemble Almara performed in Haimhausen Castle and provided musical support for the anniversary (Photo: Karin Lübbers). The article can be found at:

Haimhausen feiert erste urkundliche Erwähnung vor 1250 Jahren - Dachau - SZ.de (sueddeutsche.de)

Release concert of the new album on May, 5 2022!

The Ensemble Almara will present the new album "Carmina Predulcia" at the release concert on May 5th, 2022 at 6:30 p.m. at Burghausen Castle, the longest castle complex in the world! The speaker of the CD, Christian Jungwirth (BR), will also be joining and adding spoken words to the concert. Beforehand there will be a guided tour for visiting the tapestries  at the castle. Ticket reservation at: www.burg-burghausen.de

New album release on November 27th!

The new album "Carmina Predulcia" by the Ensemble Almara was released on November 27th on the label Naxos. As the first recording this CD is exclusively dedicated to the music from the 15th century Schedel songbook with unique German songs but also French chansons.

Recordings for the new CD

The Ensemble Almara is currently recording a new album with pieces from a songbook from the 15th century, some of which are first recordings. More information will be announced soon.

Latest reviews of the CD Carmina Predulcia

The following review by Reinhard Kriechbaum can be found in the Concerto Magazine for Early Music No. 299 (01/2022): "The songs in Schedel's songbook reflect, especially linguistically, late medieval gusto. This makes the interpretation of some pieces by the singer Elisabeth Pawelke and her ensemble Almara harmonious. [...] Elisabeth Pawelke is at least as familiar with this area as good as singing, because she also studied medieval German studies. [...] Really predulcis, the educated humanist would say."


There is a nice review of our CD in Fanfare Magazine issue 45:1 (Sept/Oct 2021) by Colin Clarke saying:

"This is a superb disc chock-full of music that will surprise and delight, somewhat closely recorded, which only adds to the sense of visceral involvement. Recommended."


Also there is some feedback from Dr. Sebastian Hesse (ARD Radio and TV) about our music and especially about our new CD: 

"I have listened to both CDs very, very often and I find them adorable. 'Ach scheyden bitter... ' I have listened again and again, that would be my favorite. I am also completely amazed by the sound quality of the recording."


And from Ralph Graves/ University of Virginia, WTJU 91.1FM:

"The Ensemble Almara specializes in secular music of the Middle Ages and Renaissance. That makes them perfectly suited to bring this music to life. The five performers use a variety of instruments to vary the sound from track to track. The command of their respective instruments is impressive. Ensemble Almara plays with precision and elan."

Album Outros Amores

The album "Outros Amores" takes you into the world of love poetry in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance and interweaves its various aspects into a touching and passionate whole.