Marandi Hostetter was born in the mountains above Santa Cruz, California, into an ardently musical household—her father being a luthier and ethnomusicologist, her mother a pianist and cellist—immersed from birth in classical and traditional music of all types.
Beginning on violin at age four, Marandi subsequently studied violin and viola performance at Cabrillo College, the University of California at Santa Cruz. Having always had a strong passion for chamber music, Marandi has traveled around the United States and Europe to attend numerous string quartet workshops, from Colorado to Hungary, including working with the Manhattan String Quartet. In the orchestral setting she has worked under conductors such as Tito Muñoz, David Lawton and Nicole Paiement. She attended the Conservatorio di Musica “Antonio Scontrino” in Trapani, Italy.
Her classical experience further includes performing with the Astoria Symphony, the One World Symphony, and most prominently the String Orchestra of Brooklyn, where she was initially principal second violin, then principal violist, and most recently concertmaster.
She has expanded her performance career to include the New York Arabic Orchestra under the tutelage and conducting of Bassam Saba, working with artists such as Marcel Khalife. She currently performs with the National Arab Orchestra.
Owing to her diverse musical influences from a young age, her love of traditional music from all over the world has continued to thrive. She studied at the Alachki School of Music in Skopje, Macedonia under the famous accordion master Goran Alachki, and at Simon Shaheen's annual Arabic Music Retreat at Mount Holyoke College in 2012. She has additionally studied Greek violin performance with Beth Bahia Cohen, and at Ross Daly's Musical Workshop Labyrinth in Houdetsi, Crete.
In addition to classical music, among Marandi's strongest influences in the world of American traditional music are lifelong associations with Bruce Molsky, Jody Stecher, John McCutcheon and several great Québecois musicians, notably Lisa Ornstein and André Marchand.
She is best known for being a quick study, learning complex melodies and arrangements by ear, quickly and reliably memorizing melodies and modes from other cultures. Being able to adapt under a variety of circumstances, she is imaginative in the studio and a joy to perform with.