Akbank Jazz Festival celebrates 26 years of jazz in the city
ISTANBULThe Akbank Jazz Festival, one of the longest running festivals in Turkey, will be celebrating its 26th anniversary this year between Oct. 12 and 23 in Istanbul.
The festival will feature a rich program of exceptional performances by foreign jazz masters as well as Turkish ones.
The festival, bringing together the masters of jazz with music enthusiasts for 26 years, will host the Erik Truffaz Quartet, Amir ElSaffar and Theo Croker in the “Powerful Resonance” category.
Erik Truffaz, the prolific French trumpet player with 20 albums to his name, blends electronica, drum ‘n’ bass, and hip-hop with jazz. With his unique position in the world of jazz, and his extraordinary performances, Truffaz will be on the Babylon stage on Oct. 13.
Crocker, a representative of today’s American jazz music, will also be performing at Babylon Oct. 14 while ElSaffar will be on the stage at the Cemal Reşit Rey Concert Hall on Oct. 19.
Tony Allen, Pharoah Sanders, Ron Carter and Paolo Fresu-Omar Sosa Duo will be the guests of the festival’s Masters of Jazz category.
Cuban songwriter and pianist Sosa, a three-time Grammy nominee and an important name in today’s Latin jazz scene, will join talented trumpet player Fresu to perform in the festival as part of their world tour promoting their second duo album “Eros” released in April. The duo’s concert at the Cemal Reşit Rey Concert Hall Oct. 16 promises an unforgettable night as they continue to combine the old and the new sounds of Italy and Cuba.
The same night Sanders, the 75-year-old Grammy winner who is regarded as one of the most respected jazz saxophonists in the U.S., will also take the stage at the same venue for another memorable performance.
Nigerian-born drummer, composer and songwriter Allen, who created the “Afrobeat” movement, a blend of traditional African music, jazz and funk, will be at Babylon on Oct. 19.
The legendary Carter, one of the most prolific jazz musicians of all-time with his contributions to nearly 2500 albums, will honor the festival with his long standing “Golden Striker Trio” on the Zorlu Performance Arts Center on Oct. 20.
Charenee Wade, a star vocalist in the U.S. with the timbre of her voice resembling Betty Carter and Sarah Vaughan, will perform her latest album “Offering” in which she interpreted soul & jazz poet-musician Gil Scott-Heron’s revolutionary heritage in the festival on Oct. 12 at The Seed.
Soul musician Imany will take the stage at Volkswagen Arena on Oct. 21.
The 26th Akbank Jazz Festival will host Sokratis Sinopoulos, one of the few internationally performing lyra players, who will play pieces from his “Eight Winds” album released in 2015 at Akbank Sanat on Oct. 13.
Italian solo pianist and bandleader Stefano Battaglia, a reputable figure in the circles of classical music, will play some of his best compositions at Akbank Sanat on Oct. 14.
Ali Perret’s “DU.DU,” a project conceived by world-renowned duduk (double reed flute) player Suren Asaduryan and jazz pianist Ali Perret from Istanbul, attempts at creating a new universal language by combining contemporary Western harmonies with millennia-old Anatolian ballads. The band will commemorate the late Mehmet Uluğ with a musical expression on the stage of Babylon on Oct. 18.
One of the rare musicians to use the trombone as a solo instrument, and the winner of the Arif Mardin special award in 2009, Bulut Gülen, will play songs from his debut album “Su” released last year at Akbank Sanat on Oct. 20.
Bass player, composer and arranger Alper Yılmaz, globally acclaimed for his first two albums “Clashes” and “Over the Clouds,” will take part in the festival with his brand new work “Different City, Different Mood” on Oct. 21.
Introducing music lovers to a whole new musical perspective with an authentic guitar playing style and unique compositions, Timuçin Şahin will play pieces from his latest album “Inherence” on Oct. 22 at Akbank Sanat.
Three remarkable musicians, master of percussion Okay Temiz, pianist and composer Tuluğ Tırpan and Colombian bass guitarist Juan Garcia-Herreros, a Best Latin Jazz Album Grammy nominee, will be at the Caddebostan Culture Center on Oct. 22.
Berlin-based Japanese instrumentalist and composer Masayoshi Fujita, a.k.a. “El fog,” New York-based saxophonist Ray Blue, drummer and vibraphonist Jason Marsalis and rapper Saul Williams as well as İlham Gencer, Fatih Erkoç, Ferit Odman, Terell Stafford, Bilal Karaman and Önder Focan wil take the stage at the festival, too.
The 26th Akbank Jazz Festival will also be home to a number of talks, panel discussions and workshops this year.
The Jazzy Brunch, a feature of the Akbank Jazz Festival that appeals both to the ears and also to the palates, will continue in the 26th edition. For those of you that want to enjoy a pleasant Sunday brunch to start the week in the company of jazz music, the Papyon Quartet will be playing in the lush and peaceful atmosphere of Bizim Tepe, Tepe Majeur on Oct. 16. The next Sunday, Oct. 23, the Papyon Quartet will be at Club Quartier located within the Saint Joseph Alumnae Association facilities in Moda.