Istanbul readies for parade of stars

Istanbul readies for parade of stars

ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News
Istanbul readies for parade of stars

The parade of stars starts tonight with Madonna’s performance at Turk Telekom Arena and will continue with Stevie Wonder, Enrico Macias, Lenny Kravitz, Dany Brillant, Nancy Ajram, Chris de Burgh, Tony Bennett.

Istanbul locals and tourists alike will have the chance to see a raft of famous musical stars perform live in the city this year, headlined by none other than the Queen of Pop, Madonna, who plays tonight.

The parade of stars starts tonight with Madonna’s performance at Turk Telekom Arena and will continue with Stevie Wonder, Enrico Macias, Lenny Kravitz, Dany Brillant, Nancy Ajram, Chris de Burgh, Tony Bennett and many others.

Madonna is visiting Turkey for the first time in 19 years as part of her world tour.

The world tour for the singer of hits like “Material Girl” and “Like a Virgin” started in Tel Aviv on May 29 and will continue at stadiums and open-air venues around the world. During the tour, Madonna will also visit South America and Australia again after a 20-year hiatus.

Madonna will visit 26 European cities including Berlin, Paris and London, following her European premiere tonight in Istanbul.

Turkcell Kuruçeşme Arena, meanwhile, which is famous for its Bosporus view, will host a number of local and international rock groups. Macy Gray, who has collected a number of Grammys and is seen as one of the world’s most famous practitioners of R&B, neo-soul and pop vocals, already performed at Turkcell Kuruçeşme Arena on June 4.

Tom Jones, the Welsh crooner who is famous for his rich voice, will perform at the same venue on June 26. Jones has had a huge fan base in Turkey since 1965, and his albums have sold more than 100 million worldwide, thanks in part to hits like “She’s a Lady,” “Delilah,” “Chills and Fever,” “Thunderball,” “Love Me Tonight,” “It’s Not Unusual,” “I’ll Never Fall In Love Again” and “What’s New Pussycat.”

Diva to hit Turkish stage

Perceived as one of the latest divas to hit the world stage, Jill Scott will come to Istanbul on July 17, while alternative group Beirut will be on stage Sept. 21.

Macias will visit Istanbul to give a concert at the same arena on July 25. Macias has 800 songs, 80 of which have been sung in Turkish by stars such as Ajda Pekkan, Nilüfer, Candan Erçetin and Ayten Alpman.

Kravitz, who has won four Grammies for best male rock vocal performance and has sold more than 20 million albums around the world, will be on stage Oct. 4 for his first Istanbul performance in four years. More recently, Kravitz has become famous for acting in “The Hunger Games.”

On Dec. 1, 2011, Kravitz was honored with one of the highest cultural awards in France when he was made an Officer of the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by French Cultural Minister Frederic Mitterrand in Paris. Kravitz said he was “particularly touched” to receive the award in France as his success in the country pre-dated his success in the United States and still enjoys great record sales in the country today. Kravitz joins a select group of other American recipients such as Martin Scorsese, George Clooney, and Bob Dylan to receive the award.

Dany Brillant, who has visited Turkey many times to give concerts, will be at the Cemil Topluzlu Open Air Theater on July 11 with a mix of French chansons and Puerto Rican music.

Rising star of Arab music

A rising star in the world of Arabic music, Nancy Ajram will also take the stage at Cemil Topluzlu as part of Istanbul’s shopping fest on June 27. Her 2008 album “Betfakkar Fi Eih” (What Are You Thinking About?) spawned seven singles and won Nancy’s first world music award as best-selling Middle Eastern artist, the youngest Arab WMA winner to date. She has released seven studio albums to date and numerous other chart-topping singles such as “Sehr Ouyouno,” “Atabtab,” “Moegaba,” “Ehsas Jdeed,” “El Donya Helwa,” “Mashi Haddi” and “Fi Hagat.”

Ajram is the first and only female sponsor and spokesperson of Coca-Cola in the Middle East and Arab world. Considered by many as the Arabic music icon of the decade, Nancy was described on the Oprah Winfrey Show as one of the most influential personalities of the Middle East. Antony Hegarty, meanwhile, will be in Istanbul with his 39-person philharmonic orchestra for a performance July 9.
Morrissey, one of the legendary voices of the English alternative music scene, will be in Istanbul for the Istanbul Jazz Festival on July 19. Later, Dead Can Dance, a famous ethereal group from the 1980s and 1990s, will reunite after 15 years to perform in Istanbul on Sept. 19. Istanbul will also host a number of festivals during the summer. The organizers of Istanbul’s Efes One Love, a famous music festival, have announced that Kimbra, Pulp and Selah Sue will headline the event.

Pulp, a British alternative rock band that was formed in 1978, will perform a selection of their top hits with all of their original members after a 10-year break from the stage.

Kimbra, a New Zealand singer, achieved international fame with her duet “Somebody That I Used to Know” with Australian artist Gotye last year. Her eclectic fashion sense and stylish music videos have quickly earned her fans around the world.