Turkish folk music legend’s life story to be made into biopic
The life story of Turkish folk music legend Neşet Ertaş, who is fondly remembered as the “Bozkırın Tezenesi” (Voice of Prairie) in the country and was declared as a living human treasure by UNESCO before he died, will be made into a biopic.
Ertaş’s life decorated with tunes that shed light on Anatolia’s last thousand-year history will be told in a motion picture titled “Garip Bülbül” (Poor Nightingale), most likely by next season.
Two bards who are still trying to keep the “abdal” culture alive, a socio-cultural group found mainly in central and western Anatolia who follow an itinerant lifestyle, will play Ertaş in the movie.
Actor Bektaş Dolu will portray Ertaş’s youth while Ramazan Bağgül will immortalize the artist’s period from Germany to Turkey after he got older. Ömer Faruk Sorak will sit in the director’s chair in the film, which will be adapted from the two-volume book of academic Erol Parlak into the cinema.
Ertaş was born in the Central Anatolian province of Kırşehir in 1938, and he was first introduced to an instrument at the age of 6 when he started playing the violin and then the bağlama, a traditional Turkish guitar.
His career got a giant push when he applied at the state-owned Turkish Radio and Television (TRT) station in Ankara to perform Turkish folk music in the 1950s.
He was honored with numerous awards and titles throughout his life, including an honorary doctorate by Istanbul Technical University’s Turkish Music State Conservatory in 2011.
Ertaş died in 2012 in the western province of İzmir at the age of 74 after battling cancer.