İzmir to revive with international rythms
The International İzmir Festival will be held between June 14 and Sept 3 with the participation of world famous artists musicians, including the Martha Graham Dance Company.The 28th International İzmir Festival will be held between June 14 and Sept. 3, hosting the great masters of rhythm. The 600th year of Turkey-Poland diplomatic relations will be celebrated at the ancient theater of Ephesus, with attendees including renowned artists from both countries. In addition, friendship ties with current EU term president Greece will be improved with an unforgettable concert in Ephesus.
Along with the ancient theater of Ephesus, the Library of Celsus, the Kültürpark Openair Theater, the Çeşme Hagia Haralambos Church, the Ahmet Adnan Saygun Art Center, İzmir Economy University and the Şirince St. John Baptist Church will host the festival’s events this year.
Opening by Warsaw Philharmonic
World renowned Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra Sinfonia Varsovia, under the baton of one of the most efficient composers of the 20th century, Krzysztof Penderecki, will be at the ancient theater of Ephesus for the opening concert of the festival on June 14. The Sinfonia Varsovia, one of Poland’s best known musical institutions, will perform with Turkish pianist and composer Hüseyin Şermet. Artists from Turkey and Poland will celebrate the 600th anniversary of their diplomatic relations during the concert.
On June 18, Arte dei Suonatori, the pioneering group of Baroque music in Poland, will perform its new program “Alla Polacca, Alla Turca” with violin virtuoso Rachel Podger at the Library of Celsus. The concert will include not only the works of well-known composers such as Telemann, Haydn and Mozart, but also cultural pieces from the Ottoman era.
The Hagia Haralambos Church, one of the most significant cultural venues in Çeşme, has recently been transformed into an arts center after a restoration process, and will host the Amaryllis Quartett at the festival.
After winning the Finalists’ Prize at the Premio Paolo Borciani 2011 in Reggio Emilia and then, only four weeks later, winning First Prize and the Grand Prize at the 6th Melbourne International Chamber Music Competition, the Amaryllis Quartett now numbers among the first rank of string quartets of its generation.
The İzmir State Opera and Ballet Orchestra, under the baton of Lukas Karytinos, will also be performing at Ephesus with Mario Frangoulis on June 27. Italian composer Frangoulis has released more than 15 solo albums and 10 compilation albums. Voted Best Male Classical Crossover Artist of 2011, Frangoulis is also known for his humanitarian work and serves as International Ambassador for the Horatio Alger Association of Distinguished Americans in the U.S., and Ambassador of Peace for the World Centers of Compassion for Children International, which was founded by Nobel Peace Laureate Betty Williams in Europe and abroad.
A first at the festival
On July 7, the festival will hold a first. The IKSEV Chamber Orchestra, under the baton of Orhun Orhon, will play at İzmir’s Economy University with the Star Students concert. The young talents who will participate in the International Violin Master Class will perform in concerts between July 2 and 5. The concert will be accompanied by Dora Schwarzberg, Tuncay Yılmaz, and pianist associate professor Gökhan Aybulus.
On July 9, the St. John Baptist Church will host famous Polish mezzosoprano Liliana Zaesinska and pianist Szczepan Konczal. Zalesinska studied singing at the Music University in Lódz, graduating with honors in musical performance and opera. She also holds a postgraduate diploma with honors from the University of Music and Performing Arts in Vienna. She is also an alumna from Warsaw University’s Institute of Art History.
On July 11, Italian Quartetto Di Venezia will be performing at the Celsius Library. Formed by Andrea Vio and Alberto Battiston (violin), Giancarlo Di Vacri (viola) and Angelo Zanin (violoncello), Quartetto di Venezia makes annual appearances throughout Italy as well as Europe and the U.S. The band will perform works by Beethoven, Wolf and Brahms.
Established by Martha Graham as one of the most important dancers and choreographers of the 20th century, and recognized as the “Picasso of dance,” the Martha Graham Dance Company will take the stage at the İzmir Kültürpark on July 17. With its iconic program that consists of choreographies that are full with rich historical and thematic narrations, the company will present a visual feast at the Izmir Festival.
With the motto “Dance is a secret language of spirit,” Graham has forever changed the boundaries of this art form with her works on the basis of social, political and psychological contents.
The festival will end on Sept. 3 at the Ahmet Adnan Saygun Arts Center with the cellist Yo-Yo Ma, who has won 17 Grammy awards. Ma will performwith the “Silk Road Ensemble,” with whom he has fulfilled many memorable musical experiences.
Ma and the “Silk Road Ensemble” will perform Adnan Saygun’s piece “Partita,” which has not been performed by Ma since 2001 and is included in his new album “A Playlist without Borders.” In addition to Saygun, Ma also plays 17 pieces of American, Chinese, Egyptian, Iranian composers in the special new album.