43rd Istanbul Music Festival Kicks Off

The 43rd Istanbul Music Festival, organised by the Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts (İKSV), under the sponsorship of Borusan Holding, kicks off on Sunday, 31 May with the opening ceremony and concert to be held at the Lütfi Kırdar Convention and Exhibition Centre on Sunday, 31 May at 20.00 (GMT+2).

The Istanbul Music Festival will continue until 29 June around the theme “Cultural Landscapes” and will host close to 600 local and international artists in Istanbul, including names such as Yuri Bashmet, Boris Berezovsky, Emmanuelle Haïm, Angela Hewitt, Paavo Jarvi, Kim Kashkashian, Gidon Kremer, Patricia Kopatchinskaja, Fazıl Say, Christian Tetzlaff, and Yuja Wang, as well as some of the world’s leading ensembles, including Lausanne Chamber Orchestra, the Franz List Chamber Orchestra, Kremerata Baltica Chamber Orchestra, and the 12 Cellists of the Berlin Philharmonic. As this year’s festival’s resident guest orchestra, Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen will be putting on two concerts. The festival programme will present 27 concerts featuring chamber orchestras, vocal concerts, and recitals, as well as two world premieres and three Turkey premieres.

The festival venues include the Hagia Irene Museum, Heybeliada Hagia Triada Monastery, St. Antoine Church, Süreyya Opera House, Austrian Cultural Office, Surp Vortvots Vorodman Church, İş Sanat Concert Hall, Lütfi Kırdar Convention and Exhibition Centre, and Boğaziçi University’s Albert Long Hall. The free open-air concert series of the festival “Weekend Classics”, will welcome viewers at the Garden of the Consulate General of Netherlands, the Selamiçeşme Freedom Park, the Sakıp Sabancı Museum Garden, and the Austrian Cultural Office Garden.

43rd Istanbul Music Festival opens with a world premiere:

Hasan Niyazi Tura / “Song of a Martyr”


The 43rd Istanbul Music Festival opens with the world premiere of the festival’s commission to Hasan Niyazi Tura. The symphonic poem of Hasan Niyazi Tura, Song of a Martyr commemorates the 100th anniversary of the Gallipoli War, and will be performed by tenor Serkan Bodur, accompanied by the Borusan Istanbul Philharmonic Orchestra (BIPO) under the direction of Sascha Goetzel. The premiere will be followed by the teen-prodigy Can Çakmur, who has been garnering international awards in the last few years. Accompanied by BIPO, Çakmur will perform Dmitri Shostakovich’s Piano Concerto No.2 in F Major, Op.102. Finally, Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition, as a reference to the festival theme will be performed.

At the opening ceremony, the Istanbul Music Festival’s “Honorary Award” will be presented to Prof. Filiz Ali for her contributions to Turkey’s culture and arts through her work on the development and proliferation of polyphonic western music and her valued efforts in training many musicians and musicologists through her role as educator for over 50 years. Also, the Ayvalık International Music Academy (AIMA) founded by Filiz Ali, will perform on Saturday, 6 June at the Saint Antoine Church at 20.30.

The 43rd Istanbul Music Festival’s award ceremony and opening concert will be broadcast live by İKSV’s Official Communication Sponsor Vodafone on muzik.iksv.org/tr, vodafone.com.tr/red and on Vodafone TV.

Three Turkey premieres and a Lifetime Achievement Award” at the first week of the festival

12 Cellists of Berlin Philharmonic at Hagia Eirene Museum

Monday, 1 June, Hagia Eirene Museum, 20.30

The 12 Cellists, or as they are sometimes called The Glorious Twelve” (Die Welt), the independent ensemble formed of the cellos of an orchestra will perform at Hagia Eirene Museum on Monday, 1 June. Since 1972, they have regularly appeared as an ensemble, occasionally in Berlin and often elsewhere. This concert will also feature the Turkey premiere of the German based Turkish composer Tayfun Erdem’s March of the Blue Butterflies.

Gidon Kremer and Kremerata Baltica

2 Turkey Premieres and a unique “Seasons” night with Piazzolla and Philip Glass

Tuesday, 2 June | Lütfi Kırdar Convention and Exhibition Center | 20.30
The great violinist Gidon Kremer (holder of the 2010 Istanbul Music Festival Lifetime Achievement Award) will be at the festival for a special project. At the concert to be held at the Lütfi Kırdar Conference and Exhibition Center on Tuesday, 2 June at 20.30, Gidon Kremer and his much acclaimed ensemble Kremerata Baltica will take the audience on a musical journey from Piazzolla to Philip Glass.

Two Turkey premieres will be featured at the concert where Piazzolla’s “The Four Seasons of Buenos Aires” and Raskatov’s “Seasons Digest” will be performed. Phillip Glass’ composition for solo violin and strings, “American Four Seasons,” will be accompanied with video installations produced by multimedia artists including Jonas Mekas, the legendary filmmaker, poet and artist who has often been called “the godfather of American avant-garde cinema”. The second Turkey premiere of this special night is Mieczysław Weinberg’s Chamber Symphony No.1, Op.145. A “Pre-Concert Talk” by conductor Cem Mansur will be held just before the concert, from 19.30 to 20.00.

Celebrating its 70th anniversary year

Borodin Quartet will be presented the festival’s “Lifetime Achievement Award”

Thursday, 4 June, Hagia Eirene Museum, 20.30

The world’s oldest string quartet in existence as well as one of the world’s finest, Borodin Quartet celebrates its 70th anniversary in 2015 with a major world tour, which also brings the quartet back to the festival after five years, this time with the magnetically compelling Boris Berezovsky.

Widely recognized as “the truest successor to the great Russian pianists” (Gramophone Magazine), Boris Berezovsky is a regular guest to prominent orchestras worldwide and his formidable discography is decorated with many international awards, including the Echo Klassik, Choc de la Musique, Diapason d’Or, and the BBC Music Magazine award. In his festival debut, Berezovsky will be performing the Dvorak piano quintets with the Borodin Quartet.

The legendary Borodin Quartet will be presented the festival’s “Lifetime Achievement Award” before the concert on Thursday 4 June at 20.30 at Hagia Eirene Museum. This concert, sponsored by Global Yatırım Holding AŞ, will offer the audience the chance to reflect on the remarkable continuity of the ensemble’s aesthetic values and the dedication of its members, past and present, to the high art of quartet playing.

Istanbul Music Festival will continue until 29 June

The 43rd Istanbul Music Festival will continue in its second week with Fazıl Say’s Mozart Marathon with four concerts from 9 through 13 June, the world premiere of festival’s commission to Tigran Mansurian by Kim Kashkashian and Peter Nagy on 10 June, and many more.


For more information and full programme, please visit muzik.iksv.org/en


The tickets of the 43rd Istanbul Music Festival may be purchased through Biletix Call Center (+90 216 556 98 00) and www.biletix.com and İKSV (Nejat Eczacıbaşı Building Sadi Konuralp Caddesi No:5 Şişhane, between 10.00–18.00, except Sunday).

Festival tickets will be on sale at the box office located in the Hagia Eirene Museum throughout the festival.

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Author: istanbul

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