Festival to revive Ankara’s music scene
ANKARAOrganized by the Sevda-Cenap And Music Foundation, the 33rd International Ankara Music Festival will open on April 4. With the participation of nearly 330 artists from 17 countries, the festival will present a total of 12 events until April 30. Among the events will be three world premieres and eight Turkey premieres.
Symphonic orchestra concerts in the festival’s opening and closing, artists’ first concerts, the participation of young talents and the development of joint national and international projects are some of the traditions of the Ankara Music Festival.
The opening concert of the festival will be organized on April 4, featuring the Ankara Youth Symphonic Orchestra under the baton of Fazlı Orhun Orhon. The orchestra was formed in 2011 with the members of conservatories in Ankara.
The soloist of the concert will be young pianist Tolga Atalay Ün, who is working at the Royal College of Music in the U.K.
Renowned Italian band Aniello Desiderio & Quaretto Furioso will give a workshop with classical guitarists as part of the festival. The band will also be on the stage on April 7.
The French Kafig dance ensemble, a modern dance company which combines classical music with hip hop dance and martial arts, will present “BoxeBoxe” on April 12.
The Hacettepe University Symphony Orchestra will be on the stage on April 13. The concert will be conducted by Burak Tüzün and accompanied by Rahşan Apay in cello.
Two giant names of the classical music world, Steven Isserlis from the U.K. and Canadian pianist Connie Shih, will be in Turkey for the first time as a duo on April 16.
Isserlis is distinguished for his diverse repertoire and distinctive sound deployed with his use of gut strings and command of phrasing. He is also one of only two living cellists featured in the Gramophone Hall of Fame. He gives most of his concerts on the Marquis de Corberon (Nelsova) Stradivarius of 1726, kindly loaned to him by the Royal Academy of Music.
Shih, considered to be one of Canada’s most outstanding artists, was awarded the Sylva Gelber Award for most outstanding classical artist under age 30.
On April 21, the festival will host the New York Gypsy All Stars. Masters of contemporary Balkan Gypsy music, the band have a musical chemistry with explosive staying power, blending traditional Gypsy, Turkish, Indian and Latin flavors with a scorching jazz and funk backbone, creating a unique sound which exemplifies New York City in the most eclectic sense possible.
Composed of young male musicians, Jin Myung is a Korean percussion group trying to interpret Korean traditional music in this modern global age by studying it through various international festivals and events. The festival will host the group on April 23.
On April 25, the Yurondy Ensemble, formed by Irish and Turkish artists, will make the world premiere of Turkish composer Onur Türkmen’s “Sailing to Byzantium.” The concert will be screened as a documentary.
The Yurodny Ensemble was founded in 2007 by saxophonist and composer Nick Roth, they perform contemporary interpretations of traditional music from around the world alongside new works by composers inspired by these traditions.
Türkmen, who graduated from the Berklee College of Music in Boston in 1998, completed his master and doctoral studies at Istanbul Technical University’s Center for Advanced Musical Research (MIAM). He is currently teaching at Bilkent University Music and Performing Arts Department.
For chamber music lovers, the Sierra Ensemble, a San Francisco Bay Area-based violin, horn and piano trio, will be on stage on April 27. The trio blends violin, horn and piano and brings a unique combination of chamber expertise and solo artistry to the concert stage.
The festival will be closed on April 30 with the Hajibeyov Azerbaijan State Symphony Orchestra, which was formed in 1920 as one of the first orchestras in the Soviet Union. It is affiliated with the Azerbaijan State Philharmonic Society.
Three well-known musicians from the Azerbaijan Classical Music world, maestro Rauf Abulhayev, violinist Toğrul Ganiyev and pianist Murat Adıgözelzade, will be the soloists of the concert.
Ticket prices of the festival vary from 25 to 90 Turkish Liras.