The center of Çanakkale may not have many Alpine hills, but the north Aegean’s streets will be alive with the sound of music for the next week amid the continuing Çanakkale Choral Festival.
Onsekiz Mart University (ÇOMÜ) is hosting 27 choir teams from Turkey, Cyprus and Bulgaria for an event that will bring together thousands of choral artists, including 100 students.
ÇOMÜ music department Professor Mete Gökçe, who is running the art direction for the festival, said workshops, ateliers, street concerts, panels and seminars would all lend the event a very energetic approach to music.
“A total of 27 choirs from Turkey will be here and also a Bulgarian children’s choir, which has received the ‘European Culture Ambassador’ title, will also be at the festival,” he said. The choir from Turkey’s northwestern neighbor is also set to give a gala performance at the festival.
The aim of the gathering is to contribute to music and the culture of choirs in Turkey. “In the coming years, we aim to make international works for the festival and spread it,” Gökçe said.
The festival, which will last until July 14, is running over six days.
Çanakkale Onsekiz Mart University rector Sedat
Laçiner (L), Mayor Ülgür Gökhan (second from L),
Chamber of Commerce president Bülend Engin
(second from R) and also art director Mete
Gökçe (R) attend the opening. AA photo
The festival opened July 8 with a ceremony at the ÇTSO Congress Center, during which ÇOMÜ Rector Professor Sedat Laçiner commented on Gezi Park events, saying each voice had a meaning and that each voice meant something.
Speaking after Laçiner, Çanakkale Mayor Ülgür Gökhan said a society could not live without art. “Having lots of different colors and voices is good for society. Choirs mean peace because in choirs, many different voices unite and make harmony.”
Excitement for the 2013 Çanakkale Choral Festival stems from the local and foreign choirs’ performances, the voices of choirs from all over the city, artistic and educational choral workshops, social responsibility projects, panels and roundtables, invited speakers and many innovational activities, he said.
Until the end of the festival, polyphonic melodies will be heard from the streets of Çanakkale. Panels and seminars will reflect the necessity and the beauty of choral music, said Gökçe.
Rotary Choir, Choir Solo, the Mersin Chamber Choir, Rezonans, the Konrul Vocal Ensemble, the
Children’s Choir are some of the choirs that will be at the festival.
The panels and discussions will highlight the importance of choir education and choir festivals.
There will be choirs from Ankara, Denizli, Istanbul, Mersin, Bolu, Tekirdağ and many more, he said, adding that those choirs would perform a number of street concerts. Meanwhile, free-diving world champion Cenk Devrim Ulusoy of Turkey will make a “Voice and Breath” show with the choral artists, while there will also be cultural tours in Çanakkale for participants, said Gökçe, adding that the closing party would be made on the streets with all the choirs gathered together. Çanakkale Municipality and the Çanakkale Chamber of Trade support festival.