The eighth International Istanbul Opera Festival, organized by the State Opera and Ballet, kicked off on June 13 with “Abduction from the Seraglio.”
Following the performance in the garden of the Istanbul Archaeology Museums, Istanbul State Opera and Ballet (IDOB) Director and Art Director Suat Arıkan said art lovers had showed great interest in the festival. “Tonight was really a surprise for us; we did not expect that crowd because of possible rain. The audience is great.”
He said the artists presented a magnificent performance. “I am very happy. We offered Turkish delights to guests. This is an authentic Ottoman palace; the environment, weather, artists and guests are great. I hope the rest of the festival will be like this, too.”
Speaking about President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s suggestion that the Atatürk
Culture Center (AKM) would be replaced with a very beautiful piece of art, Arıkan said the statement met the expectations that they had been anticipating for years and that Istanbul would finally acquire the stage it deserves.
Opera and ballet are different from other form of arts, Arıkan said. “This is why it is not possible to perform the works on a random stage. As is known, the art of opera and ballet has not been as it should for a long time. It is a necessity to demolish the AKM. Even though it is a bit late, it is great news that it will be replaced.”
IDOB’s production of “Abduction from the Seraglio” is directed by Zdravko Lazarov and staged by Yekta Kara and features dancers Eylem Duru, Kenan Dağaşan, Tuncay Kurtoğlu, Erdem Erdoğan, Sevim Zerenaoğlu, Cenk Bıyık and Cavit Şaher. Chief violinist Seda Subaşı is also accompanying the IDOB Orchestra and Choir for the performances.
“Abduction from the Seraglio” will be on the stage again on June 15.
The festival will continue with the Opera Stars concert on June 17, “Macbeth” on June 20 and “Faust” on June 23 at Zorlu PSM.