Music student buys Ottoman kemancha
ISTANBUL – Anadolu Agency
A stringed instrument that once belonged to a woman in the harem of Sultan Abdulaziz has been bought by a 22-year-old Turkish music student.
Emine Bostancı, who studies at Rotterdam Conservatory in the Netherlands, bought the three-stringed kemancha from a Canada-based collector for around 20,000 Turkish liras ($5,670).
It was made for Abdulaziz, who reigned from 1861 to 1876, by an Armenian craftsman before being bought by Fahire Fersan, a student of the renowned Ottoman composer Tanburi Cemil.
When she heard that a 150-year-old kemancha, which is 50 centimeters in length, was up for sale, she started saving up.
“I never mentioned it to anyone until I got all the money,” said Bostancı, who has studied the kemancha since the age of 16.
“It was a big responsibility for me. Miss Fahire had played it before me. When I play it in the evenings, I really enjoy it as if Miss Fahire was listening to me from a corner,” she said.
The kemancha is an ancient stringed musical instrument played with a bow. Its tender and melodic sound is a key component of classical Turkish music.