Aspendos opera ballet festival to feature renowned artists
The 26th edition of the festival will take the audience through a magical experience in the ancient outdoor theater, Aspendos, said Murat Karahan, a tenor and director general of Turkey’s State Opera and Ballet (DOB), in an interview with the state-run Anadolu Agency.
“We are now producing larger than life shows that will have an impact in the world,” Karahan said.
Stating that they used the same method used in all important festivals in the world, Karahan said, “Foreign orchestras or opera companies are no more invited in the world by paying 300-500,000 euros. Festivals are making their own splendid big and splendid productions. As DOB, we already have six successful orchestras, ballets, choirs and operas. We have lots of opportunities. So, we produce our own shows and welcome well-known and appreciated soloists. This is what should be done. Last year we did it in ‘Turandot’ opera and gained a big success. Years later, the ancient theater of Aspendos was so full for the first time, it was packed.”
Karahan said that DOB’s two big productions in the next season, “Carmen” and “Aida” operas, will be performed for the first time in the International Aspendos Opera Ballet Festival and will later be on stage in Istanbul and Ankara.
“Carmen,” directed by Italian director Vincenzo Grisostomi Travagllni, will be on stage on Sept. 1 and 2 and will feature Bolshoi Opera soloist Yulia Mazurova.
Karahan said that they will host the Pavel Vırsky Dance Ensemble, which combines Ukrainian folk dances with modern ballet, on Sept. 4, adding, “This is an amazing show with amazing music, receiving a standing ovation wherever they go.”
He said that on Sept. 8 the Aspendos stage will host Tchaikovsky’s magnificent and magical ‘Swan Lake,’ and that the Vienna State Opera and Ballet Association artists will give an unforgettable night to the audience.
Karahan said that the brand new “Aida” production will be on stage on Sept. 12 and 13, adding, “Again, there will be a great, ambitious production where soloists from Bolshoi, and even horses will parade on stage. We know our possibilities and our strength: we are trying to produce productions that are worthy of our own ballet. ‘Aida’ will be with the audience in Ankara in the new season.”
The “Aida” orchestra will be conducted by famous Italian conductor Fabrizio Maria Carminati.
Karahan, Anna Nechaeva from Bolshoi, world-class baritone of Ankara DOB Eralp Kıyıcı and Russian soprano Anastasia Boldyreva will be on stage for the performance. Tenor Efe Kışlalı and Franceska Tiburzi will take the stage in the “Aida” show on Sept. 13.
Karahan said that “Troy,” which is the first Turkish opera to be exhibited at the Bolshoi Theater, will be shown in the Aspendos Festival.
“We will present this magnificent production to the audience at the Antalya Expo Center. We also use this venue as the stage for the first time this year,” he added.
The closing of the event will be on Sept. 18 at the Aspendos Stage, he said, and that the orchestra will be conducted by maestro Carminati.
Karahan said that the commercial film made for the promotion of the festival, featuring himself as the pilot and the artists as passengers, has had positive returns.
“The English version of the film was also made. Even though tickets are recently on sale; it affected the sales.”