Turkish composer Muammer Sun stands in solidarity with Fazıl Say
ISTANBULInternationally acclaimed Turkish pianist and composer Fazıl Say has had three pieces removed from the program of the Culture and Tourism Ministry’s Presidential Symphony Orchestra (CSO) in the new season. The orchestra wanted to replace Say’s works with the works of another famous Turkish composer, Muammer Sun. However, in reaction to the CSO’s decision against Say, Sun refused the orchestra’s request to play his works.
Delivering a message on his social media account, Say thanked Sun, saying, “I express my respect and sincere thanks to Muammer Sun. He is a gentle person; honest and brave. My works had been replaced with his works, but he refused them to be played. He did not allow himself and his art to be a political tool. He has taught music for years and now he taught them to be human. I thank him. Bravo.”
The program that CSO sent to the ministry included Say’s “Istanbul Symphony,” “Hermiyas – The Boy on the Dolphin’s Back” and the piano concerto “Water.” In a concert in November, to be conducted by Rengim Gökmen, Say’s “Istanbul Symphony” was set to be played. Two other works were set to be performed at a concert to be conducted by Naci Özgüç at the ATO Congresium in Ankara in May.
Before the opening concert, the CSO was warned its new season’s program would not be approved by Culture Minister Ömer Çelik unless they removed Say’s works. The orchestra made the change and received approval.