There are at least four groups named Minstrel:
1) Minstrel is a one-person doujin circle formed by yuta in 2009 in Tokyo, Japan. Minstrel performs mostly arranges of songs from the Touhou video game series, and has also submitted songs to the Barrage Am Ring compilations (including one original song.) yuta will be appearing at the Comic Market 85 convention. The website can be accessed here.
2) The Italian progressive rock band MINSTREL was founded in 1991. However, it was not until in 1997 that the band released their first output in the form of a demo-tape called "New Life". The first album, “Faust” was released in 2000. It is a symphonic progressive concept album. In this album the band consists of Gianpaolo Pasini (drums), Marco Fiorina (bass), Mauro Ghilardini (keyboards & voice) and Mi.
The music of MINSTREL is concentrated in the operatic vocals of Ghilardini and the guitar work of Savoldelli. It is the operatic vocals that make their music sound like a rock opera and therefore also very original.
The album "Faust" is a rework of the same title by Goethe. Among with Mauro Ghilardini who is playing the role of Faust there are also other vocalists participating in this album playing the other characters. The nearest comparison from the 70’s would probably be ALUSA FALLAX; it has the same kind of medieval feel in it.
MINSTREL released an album called "Ahab" in 2009, also influenced by literature (Melville). They have added a new keyboards player Arrigo Magli and Mauro Ghilardini handles only the vocals.
3) The Choir of Malachowianka - The Oldest High School in Poland
Minstrel, the school choir was established in October 1992 by Mr Sławomir Gałczynski, the music teacher. Since there was no music equipment at school, an acappella group was founded. Choir singers were the only and the most important element needed that was why Mr Gałczyński started the auditions. At the very beginning 30 singers, 20 girls and 10 boys, worked mainly on scout, tourist and other well-known songs to learn how to use their voices. Because there were to be three voices, Mr Bogdan Marciniak and then Mr Adam Matyszewski and Ms Eliza Łochowska helped to run the group.
Minstrel is invited to take part in various types of events and it organizes concerts by itself. There are about 36 of them each year. December and January seem to be the busiest months for the choir when Christmas carols concerts are performed together with Płock Symphonic Orchestra and other bands.
Each year, training courses are organized to improve the vocalic abilities of the singers and to work on the new repertoire. These courses take place during holidays, therefore the students are not burdened with studying and can concentrate on their singing. During the last ten years, the members of the choir participated in the following courses:
1994 - Krynica Górska, Poland (44 participants)
1995 - Kudowa Zdrój, Poland (51 participants)
1996 - Krynica Górska, Poland (56 participants)
1997 - Zatwarnica, Poland (47 participants)
1998 - Suwałki, Poland (29 participants)
1999 - Greece (44 participants)
2000 - Greece, Cyprus, Israel (42 participants)
2001 - Czech Republic (83 participants)
2002 - Spain (57 participants)
2003 - Croatia (40 participants).
The constant hard work proves that the choir is still developing its abilities. In 1997, Minstrel was placed third during the National School Choirs Competition in Bydgoszcz. A few months later, the choir achieved similar success during the International Choir Competition in Darmstadt, Germany. The tenth anniversary was celebrated by the choir record, where there were 24 songs, both old and modern ones. The record was prepared thanks to the cooperation with Mr Jarosław Domagała and Płock Symphonic Orchestra.
4) Serbian guitar pop band influenced by The Smiths.
"Studio M - Live" (MC, Take It Or Leave It Records, 1993)
"Neosetljivost" (MC, Take It Or Leave It Records, 1996)
"Lauda" (CD, Take It Or Leave It Records, 2001)
"Iskra" (CD, Take It Or Leave It Records, 2008)