Akbank Jazz Festival, bringing the city and the jazz culture together for 32 years and one of Turkey’s longest running festivals, is preparing to host special performances by over 120 artists from the World and Turkish Jazz scene at 22 different venues between September 24th and October 9th this year.
As one of the longest-running culture and arts projects of Akbank, which has been supporting art and artists since it was founded, Akbank Jazz Festival is preparing to meet jazz lovers for the 32nd time with its rich program that includes different rhythms and colors of jazz. Names such as Abdullah Ibrahim, Gonzalo Rubalcaba & Aymée Nuviola, Ravi Coltrane and Oded Tzur Quartet, who are among the important representatives of jazz music, will take stage at The 32nd Akbank Jazz Festival, taking place between September 24th and October 9th this year.
With its musical range expanding over the years, Akbank Jazz Festival, including classical and modern jazz as well as electronic music and world music projects in its program, will welcome this fall with a selection of jazz music and different genres of music at different points of the city. The festival will host 32 concerts at 22 different venues with more than 120 musicians, 3 conversations, 3 workshops for children, terrace concerts and dance events.
The opening of the 32nd Akbank Jazz Festival, which is organized in collaboration with Pozitif, will take place on September 24th at Muze Gazhane with a team consisting of Baris Dogukan Yazici, Cagri Sertel, Duru Tuna and Kuzey Yılmaz as part of Alp Ersonmez’s “Cereyanli” project.
This year Akbank Sanat, Muze Gazhane, Babylon, Zorlu PSM, AKM, The Badau, Nardis Jazz Club, Bizim Tepe, Bova will be accompanied by the stages of HOOD Base, Alan Kadikoy, Dada Salon Kabarett, Istanbul Toy Museum, Decollage Art Space, Postane Istanbul, Yenikoy Panayia Greek Orthodox Church, Gregor By The Badau, Zuhal Music Kanyon, Outro Record Store, CoBAC Workspace and Yeldegirmeni Art Center.
“Akbank is also one of the Turkey’s leading institutions in the field of culture and arts”
Noting that Akbank has been consistently bringing the Jazz Festival and the art lovers together for the last 32 years, Akbank CEO Hakan Binbasgil, stated that Akbank is also one of the Turkey’s leading institutions in the field of culture and arts. Binbasgil continued his words saying:
“It is a great honour for us to ink Akbank’s name in the history of a universal music genre such as jazz by organizing Turkey’s most established jazz festival. Akbank Jazz Festival, which is one of the first organizations that comes to mind when the word “jazz” is mentioned in Turkey, has not only hosted the world’s most important jazz musicians, but also helped promising young names to be recognized. In the light of all these achievements, our festival has managed to become one of the leading events in the world jazz calendar.”
“Akbank Jazz Festival celebrates its 32th year with a very special selection that spans the city and prioritizes interdisciplinary interaction.”
Akbank Art Director Derya Bigali, pointed out that Akbank Jazz Festival, which is a member of the European Jazz Network, has become a traditional festival that is followed with interest abroad and said, “We are proud to have a festival that has supported the development of jazz in Turkey for 32 years. Akbank Jazz Festival, which has hosted more than 5,000 international and Turkish jazz artists and reached more than 500,000 audiences in 32 years with more than 800 concerts, 1000 workshops and more than 100 conversations in order to pass jazz music to new generations, will welcome this fall in the city with a special selection.”
Drawing attention to the importance of interdisciplinary interaction for the festival, Derya Bigali told about this year’s special project that brings jazz and dance together: “On the evening of October 1st, Cagil Kaya’s “Scene of Anxieties” concert, will host a project that brings dance and jazz together in Alan Kadikoy. During the night choreographed and conceptualized by Ebru Cansiz, the audience will witness not a concert where dance accompanies music or music accompanies dance, but a performance where they are together for each other with all their differences and similarities.”
Akbank Culture, Arts and Organization Manager Gozde Sivisoglu said, “We are taking place in 14 different regions of Istanbul in accordance with the jazz state of the city. We have added new venues and experiences to our festival program with outdoor concerts, terrace gatherings, morning concerts and performances that bring different disciplines together.” and shared the 32nd Akbank Jazz Festival program with the guests.
This year, Akbank Jazz Festival will feature many different projects spread all over the city
This year during the Akbank Jazz Festival more than 120 artists including Abdullah Ibrahim, Aga B, Alp Ersonmez, Burhan Ocal & Istanbul Jazz Ensemble, Can Tutug, Cagil Kaya, Dans Dans, Dilek Sert Erdogan, Eda AND, Efe Demiral Trio feat. Eren Turgut & Mertcan Bilgin, Emma-Jean Thackray, Emma Rawicz Quartet, Fatih Erkoc Jazz Project, Gonzalo Rubalcaba & Aymée Nuviola, HUM, İmer Demirer Quartet feat. Ayse Gencer & Sibel Kose, Júlio Resende Duo, Kamucan Yalcin Duo, Maffy Falay Tribute Band, Nihal Saruhanlı feat. Baris Demirel, Oded Tzur Quartet, Ofer Mizrahi Trio, Portico Quartet, Progressive Balkan Wedding Orchestra by Kolektif Istanbul, Rana Bulut & Efe Erdem, Ravi Coltrane, Sedef Ercetin Quartet, Sercan Debelec Quintet, Tenderlonious, Volkan Oktem, Wonju Lee Quintet will meet the audience.
Aiming to bring jazz music to a wide audience, Akbank Jazz Festival will also bring children together with the colorful world of jazz with 3 different workshops at the Toy Museum and Akbank Sanat. The conversation program of the festival will include “Audio and Visual Experiences in the New Media Age”, “Listening Club: A Piece to Listen to While Walking the Streets of the City”, “Names Forgotten by Time”, “Stop! Listen! Jazz and Jazu Kissa in Japan” and “Women and Music in Ancient Era”.
Tickets for the 32nd Akbank Jazz Festival concerts can be purchased from Biletix, and for detailed information about the festival, please follow www.akbanksanat.com and www.akbankcazfestivali.com as well as instagram.com/AkbankSanat, facebook.com/AkbankSanat, twitter.com/AkbankSanat.
Alp Ersönmez “Cereyanlı”
Alp Ersönmez is a bassist who has not only played for groups like İlhan Erşahin’s İstanbul Sessions, MadenÖktemErsönmez, Wonderland, and Sonic Boom, he has also played for Turkish pop music’s biggest international star Tarkan. Exactly ten years after his first album “Yazısız” he released his second album “Cereyanlı” in 2021 in two parts. Creating a sonic map the musician describes as “dance-scented jazz,” Ersönmez worked with sequencers and computer-supported compositions as well as guest musicians like Erik Truffaz, Bugge Wesseltoft, İlhan Erşahin, DJ Logic, PapaDee, İmer Demirer, and Arto Tunçboyacıyan. With his project “Cereyanlı,” Ersönmez brings his long-time team of Çağrı Sertel, Barış Doğukan Yazıcı, Duru Tuna and Kuzey Yılmaz to the stage. The quintet will perform on the first day of the Akbank Jazz Festival at Müze Gazhane.
Alp Ersönmez: Bass
Çağrı Sertel: Keys
Barış Doğukan Yazıcı: Trumpet
Duru Tuna: Saxophone
Kuzey Yılmaz: Drums
Progressive Balkan Wedding Orchestra by Kolektif İstanbul
Since 2006, Kolektif İstanbul has released five albums: “Balkanatolia,” “Krivoto,” “Kerevet,” “Pastırma Yazı,” and “Kısmet.” Their genre-bending music has brought them to international festivals like the Montreux Jazz Festival, Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival, the Flow Festival, and Fira Mediterrania. The group has unparalleled stage energy and will offer one of the most high-tempo performances at the 32nd Akbank Jazz Festival with Progressive Balkan Wedding Orchestra, their take on Balkan and Anatolian melodies with touches from funk and jazz. With Duygu Soylu accompanying Kolektif İstanbul on vocals and Serhan Erkol, Barış Ertürk, and Ekin Eti on wind instruments, the group will realize its dream of creating a progressive wedding music steeped in punk, jazz, and electronic music. The Progressive Balkan Wedding Orchestra will perform on Sunday, September 25 at Müze Gazhane.
Duygu Soylu: Vocals
Richard Laniepce: Alto saxophone
Talat Karaoğlu: Clarinet
Serhan Erkol: Alto saxophone
Barış Ertürk: Bariton saxophone
Ekin Eti: Trombone
Tamer Karaoğlu: Keyboards
Ertan Şahin: Sousaphone
Batuhan Baraç: Drums
Emma Rawicz began her musical life in childhood with violin and piano. At 15, she encountered jazz and her future instrument the saxophone. In no time, her name began to be whispered in the most prestigious London jazz clubs. Her first album of original compositions, “Incantation,” on which she was accompanied by guitarist Ant Law, was released last May with the label Bridge The Gap. Among her inspirations, Emma Rawicz lists Chris Potter, Ari Hoenig, and Chick Corea. With refreshing melodies and touches from funk, she is an example of the rich palette of modern jazz. In 2022, she was named “Best Newcomer” in the Parliamentary Jazz Awards. For her second album, she has been working with a band that includes Ivo Neame, Ant Law, Conor Chaplin, and Asaf Sirkis. You can watch this “fast-rising star,” as London Jazz News describes her, at Akbank Sanat on September 27.
Emma Rawicz: Saxophones and flute
Ivo Neame: Piano
Conor Chaplin: Bass
Asaf Sirkis: Drums
Described as “the best live band of the Western hemisphere” according to several music critics, the Belgian group Dans Dans (consisted of Bert Dockx, Fred Lyenn Jacques, and Steven Cassiers) has been playing together for a decade. Dans Dans blurs the lines between jazz and rock. They use improvisation as the main fuel for their songs. Such is the case with their upcoming sixth album known simply as “6.” It was completed after just two days in the studio. The group has described its new collection as its “most spontaneous, most ‘punk’ album to date.” It brings together inspiration from far-out sources like psychedelic blues, space rock, and film noir soundtracks and masterfully unites them with jazz. The trio from Antwerp is one of the most exciting groups in the European jazz scene and is one of the main representatives of the new wave of jazz from Belgium. To experience the massive stage energy of Dans Dans with their hard and breathtaking performances, make sure to be at Akbank Sanat on September 28.
Bert Dockx: Guitar
Fred Lyenn Jacques: Bass, baritone guitar, synthesizer
Steven Cassiers: Drums, percussions, synthesizer
Sedef Erçetin Quartet
Beginning her classical music career in Paris, cellist Sedef Erçetin later honed her predisposition for improvisation by re-interpreting traditional music from various regions. She has recorded and performed with tango and jazz musicians from various countries. While continuing to produce under new inspirations and with new collaborations, Erçetin founded a quartet in Istanbul that began with the idea of using the cello as a form of vocals. She defines this project’s starting point as a classical cellist finding inspiration from jazz and musicians from the world’s music scenes and creating new musical colors together. You can watch the Sedef Erçetin Quartet with their repertoire of mostly songs by Brazilian composers and jazz standards on September 28 at the Yeldeğirmeni Arts Center.
Sedef Erçetin: Cello
Jef Giansily: Piano
Kağan Yıldız: Double bass
Berke Özgümüş: Drums
Burhan Öçal & Istanbul Jazz Ensemble
After riveting performances at jazz festivals in Montreal, Montreaux, Chicago, Paris, Roma, Vienna, and Berlin; saz, tambour, darbuka, and oud player Burhan Öçal is once again coming to the Akbank Jazz Festival. The musician pushes boundaries with his musical composure, enthusiasm, and perfectionism. He plays various percussive instruments and brings his multifaceted musical personality to life flawlessly on the stage. Traveling the four corners of the world since forming the Istanbul Oriental Ensemble in 1991, Öçal has been dubbed the “Prince of the Darbuka” in the French press. On September 28 at Dada Salon Kabarett, Burhan Öçal will be bringing together some of Turkey’s top jazz musicians for a packed stage performance.
Uraz Kıvaner: Piano
Şenova Ülker: Trumpet
Ozan Musluoğlu: Bass
Murat Süngü: Cello
Savaş Özkök: Kanun
Can Olgun: Violin
Ümit Adakale: Darbuka
Burhan Öçal: Percussion
Júlio Resende Duo
“What Júlio Resende does with Fado recalls what Keith Jarrett does with jazz standards.” This comment in Spanish newspaper El País may be the best interpretation of the work of pianist and composer Júlio Resende, a musician who has released nine Fado albums to date. After a long musical journey passing through jazz, pop, rock, and spoken word, Resende has become one of the most famous contemporary representatives of Portugal’s traditional music Fado. His latest project “Fado Jazz” was released under the label ACT. It stages a dialogue between jazz, which he treats less as a musical style and more as a way of thinking, and his home country’s musical legacy. At his September 29 performance at Akbank Sanat, Resende will be joined by guitarist Bruno Chaveiro, who spent his childhood years in Switzerland channeling his longing for his home country into a passion for Fado. The duo has worked together on stage and in the studio many times over recent years.
Júlio Resende: Piano
Bruno Chaveiro: Guitar
Wonju Lee Quintet
Born in Seoul, Wonju Lee began studying music and piano with his mother, a soprano and choral conductor, at the age of five. During high school, he took trumpet lessons from Myungkyu Kang of the Incheon Philharmonic Orchestra and worked with classical and jazz trumpet players including Gihae Kim, Munsang Jung, Jeongdeok Kim, Hikmet Altunbaşlier, and Erden Bilgen. Living in Turkey since 2012, Wonju Lee studied piano with Gulnara Jorovekova at the Erciyes University Faculty of Fine Arts, where he graduated first in his class. He also received certification in trumpet performance from the London College of Music at the University of West London. For six years, he has worked on classical music and jazz in the Embassy of the Republic of Korea in Ankara’s Korean Cultural Center while also playing concerts with the Wonju Lee Quintet. The group’s repertoire includes original compositions as well as songs from genres spanning bebop, modern, Latin music, and funk. The quintet will be performing on September 29 at Nardis as part of the 32nd Akbank Jazz Festival.
Wonju Lee: Trumpet
Berk Kurdoğlu: Piano
Erdoğan Toloğlu: Guitar
Gökhan Över: Bass
Serkan Alagök: Drums
Ankara-born Aga B is one of the local hip-hop scene’s most original and eclectic MCs since he began producing music in 2000. The two home-released albums of his early career “Aga Neredesin?” and “AgaB’sikopat” can be described as urban legends whose reputation traveled by word of mouth. He continued the tradition of producing fully realized narratives with “Al, Bum!” and “Muaf” in the 2010s. His most recent album “Muamma” includes subtle social criticism on every track. Aga B performs with fiery stage energy. As part of the 32nd Akbank Jazz Festival, he will be joined by a number of musical guests, making it something of a mini festival within the festival. On September 30, you can watch Aga B perform as Kamufle, Korhan Futacı, Su Sonia, and Barış Demirel add their own sonic touches to his signature flow.
Aga B: Vocals
Haluk Fırat: Drums
Orhun Alaca: Bass and Ableton
Öykü Damla Gözel: Keyboards
Ali Balkan Kırkpınar: Guitar
Tuğçe Doğu: Back Vocal
Hakan Kıltepe: Saxophone
Dilek Sert Erdoğan “Timeless Classics”
With 2013’s “MOMENTS,” Dilek Sert Erdoğan released Turkey’s first original soul album. Throughout her career, she has been engaged in eye-catching musical collaborations both locally and internationally while scoring wins in competitions. She has had her hand in Jazzeeba On Air, a project colorfully combining soul, funk, rock, and jazz; the Deformation Turk Project, in which she performed jazz versions of beloved Turkish songs alongside Önder Focan; and Hayatımın Divası Ayten Alpman (Ayten Alpman: The Diva of My Life), which released new arrangements of Alpman’s song. As part of the 32nd Akbank Jazz Festival, she will be performing “Timeless Classics” with her band composed of Uraz Kıvaner, Ozan Musluoğlu, Sıtkı Sırtanadolu, and Erhan Seçkin. You can see them perform on September 30 at Gregor by the Badau.
Dilek Sert Erdoğan: Vocals
Uraz Kıvaner: Piano
Ozan Musluoğlu: Double bass
Sıtkı Sırtanadolu: Guitar
Erhan Seçkin: Drums
Eda AND “Istanbulisation”
Eda AND is a Hamburg-based composer, pianist, and arranger originally from Izmir. The Turkey premier of her project “Istanbulisation” will happen as part of the 32nd Akbank Jazz Festival. AND composed her first piano concerto “Mirela” at the age of 17 and went on to study piano at the Izmir State Conservatory before moving to Germany to continue her education. She studied classical and jazz composition with Wolfgang Andreas Shultz and Wolf Kerschekat the Hochschule für Musik und Theater Hamburg. In Germany, she became the first Turkish female jazz composer and pianist in the world-famous jazz orchestra the NDR (Nord-Deutscher Rundfunk) Big Band. Her compositions combine a fanciful, playful, and childish character with her passion for classical music, jazz, soul, and funk. To date, she has released two albums: “Augmented Life,” which she recorded with musicians from Turkey’s jazz scene, and “Live in Hamburg,” a solo album recorded during the pandemic. You can watch Eda AND’s “Istanbulisation” on September 30 at Akbank Sanat.
Eda AND: Piano
Sercan Debelec Quintet
Multi-instrumentalist and composer Sercan Debelec was born in 1988. In his childhood, he began his musical education with Ömer Can, one of a small number of violin virtuosos in Turkey, before continuing his training at Başkent University’s State Conservatory. After gaining stage experience playing with different orchestras, in 2020 he released the album “Delusions” for a quartet of piano, double bass, trumpet, and drums. This was followed the next year by his solo piano album “A Short Story.” He also plays keyboards for the psychedelic rock group Surf Arabesk and engages in various collaborations with Fırat Ağacık and Abkountry. Each of Debelec’s works is based on a thematic foundation. Currently, he is working on various new projects. Recently, he released the song “Thanks for All the Fish” as part of the quartet featuring Onurcan Çağatay, Çağın Akgül, and Ekrem Eryılmaz. Performing on September 30 at the CoBAC Workspace Terrace Garden, the quartet will be joined also by Damla Gözen.
Sercan Debelec: Piano
Onurcan Çağatay: Trumpet
Çağın Akgül: Double bass
Ekrem Eryılmaz: Drums
Öykü Damla Gözel: Synthesizer
Çağıl Kaya “Scene of Anxieties”
The city encompasses endless possibilities, swinging moods, beautiful and unpleasant sounds, and a variety of shapes and speeds. The artist who lives and creates here is at times exhilarated, at times languid, playful, suffering, or angry. They exist in all their openness and idiosyncrasy. They may want to seek refuge in the comfort of the ordinary or else run from it. “Scene of Anxieties” is the totality of these endless sensations: emotional rollercoasters, interrupted sleep, outrageous words, hopefulness, enthusiasm, and never-ending giggles. “Is there such a thing as a painless creative process? Does the artist learn to live with their anxieties or do they face them? Or else do they try to purge themselves of the anxieties? Which is right?” What you will witness on October 1 at Alan Kadıköy is not simply a concert where dance accompanies music or music accompanies dance. Rather, it is a space where they all come together, for each other’s sake.
Çağıl Kaya: Vocals
Ercüment Orkut: Piano
Tamer Temel: Saxophone
Tolga Bilgin: Trumpet
Cem Aksel: Drums
Choreography & Concept: Ebru Cansız
Project Coordinator: Serhat Kural
Creative Dancers: Beril Şenöz, Beste Demir, Chiara Giorda, Furkan Yılmaz, Gülnara Golovina, Serhat Kural, İsmet Köroğlu
“Maffy’s Jazz”: Maffy Falay Tribute Band
Trumpet player Ahmet Muvaffak Falay, better known as Maffy Falay, was one of the Turkish jazz scene’s greatest talents. He passed away on February 22, 2022 at the age of 92. A popular jazz trumpet player in Europe during the 1960s, Maffy Falay was a favorite of such jazz legends as Dizzy Gillespie and Thelonious Monk and he shared the stage with Quincy Jones, Kenny Clarke, and Francy Boland. After six years of work, director Deniz Yüksel Abalıoğlu has completed the documentary “Maffy’s Jazz” about his passion for music and the overseas journeys this passion took him on. The documentary brings together interviews done with Maffy Falay at his home in Sweden with archive footage and scenes from his final concert in Stockholm in 2016. A special screening of the film will take place on October 1 at Akbank Sanat.
After the screening of “Maffy’s Jazz,” there will be a memorial concert to honor the musician and his musical legacy, with Hakan Rauf Tüfekçi and Hakan Atala’s introduction. Musicians who played with Falay during his concerts in Turkey, Engin Recepoğulları, Can Çankaya, Kağan Yıldız and Ferit Odman will perform as the Maffy Falay Tribute Band.
Engin Recepoğulları: Tenor saxophone
Can Çankaya: Piano
Kağan Yıldız: Double bass
Ferit Odman: Drums
Nihal Saruhanlı feat. Barış Demirel
An October 1 performance at HOOD Base will bring together two of the local scene’s most prolific musicians: Nihal Saruhanlı and Barış Demirel. Saruhanlı is a drummer/percussionist who first deepened his relationship with music after participating in the Oktay Temiz Rhythm Workshop in 2007 before going on to engage in particular with African rhythms, Brazilian music, and South American culture. Besides completing Bahçeşehir University’s Jazz Certificate Program in 2015-2016, Saruhanlı has played alongside a number of musicians and bands including Şevket Akıncı, Bahr, and Kalben. His new solo project Pieces & Parts is set to be unveiled soon. At the HOOD Base concert, Saruhanlı will be joined on trumpet by Barış Demirel. After collaborating with many groups in the studio and on the stage, in 2021 Demirel released his first solo album “Mutluluklar.” His second solo album will be out soon, alongside other surprises and collaborations. You can watch this duo’s first improvisational audiovisual performance as part of the 32nd Akbank Jazz Festival, accompanied by new media artist /da’s visuals.
Nihal Saruhanlı: Drums and percussion
Barış Demirel: Trumpet
Rana Bulut & Efe Erdem
Rana Bulut and Efe Erdem, the winners of the 2022 Nardis Young Jazz Vocalist Competition, will be on stage at the 32nd Akbank Jazz Festival. Born in Bursa in 1999, Rana Bulut has received vocal training from musicians who have long been contributing to jazz music in Turkey. She has studied jazz vocals with Ece Göksu and harmony, composition, piano, and ensemble with names like Aycan Teztel, Evrim Demirel, and Kağan Yıldız. She came in second in the Nardis Young Jazz Vocalist Competition with one composition of her own and one jazz standard. The trio she formed in 2020 has morphed into a duo by the name of Rana & Seher as of 2022. In addition to continuing to write her own compositions, Rana Bulut also does voice acting for various animated productions.
The first-place winner of the Nardis Young Jazz Vocalist Competition is Efe Erdem. Born in 2000, he began his musical career by studying viola and classical music at the Avni Akyol Fine Arts High School. After graduation, he got interested in piano and jazz while also training himself as a vocalist. Erdem has performed both in Turkey with the Nazım Hikmet Choir and abroad at various festivals. He is continuing his education in jazz vocals at the Istanbul State Conservatory. As part of the 32nd Akbank Jazz Festival, he will perform with his orchestra featuring Baturay Yarkın, Aydın Balpınar, and Jeff Savaryego.
Rana Bulut: Vocals
Efe Erdem: Vocals
Baturay Yarkın: Piano
Aydın Balpınar: Double bass
Jeff Savaryego: Drums
Vibraphonist, composer, and instructor Can Tutuğ is a multidimensional musician, who is interested in music’s both past and future. After studying vibraphone with Amy Salsgiver at Istanbul Technical University’s Dr. Erol Üçer Center for Advanced Studies in Music, he played as a soloist for the Thrace Academy Chamber Orchestra and also founded the jazz group The Cold Vibes. Tutuğ is an official Xylosynth artist, a MIDI mallet percussion controller. In the past 10 years, he has performed his own compositions at countless festivals both in Turkey and Europe. AllAboutJazz.com writer Arthur George describes him as “carrying on the legacy of Bobby Hutcherson”. Since 2011, he has been organizing the seminar series “Jazz History: Periods, Events, Currents, and Anecdotes.” He released his first album in 2020 with Erdem Uvalıoğlu and gave the first solo vibraphone concert in Turkey with his performance “Bir Başına” in 2021. As part of the 32nd Akbank Jazz Festival and in collaboration with Yeniköy Jazz Days, he will be performing in the courtyard of the Yeniköy Panayia Koumariottissa Greek Orthodox Church on Sunday morning, October 2.
Can Tutuğ: Vibraphone
Fatih Erkoç Jazz Project
Fatih Erkoç began playing music at the age of three when his father, the oud player Hasan Erkoç, gifted him a violin. He then went on to study Western Music at the Istanbul Municipal Conservatory. His first amateur stage performances happened as part of the İstanbul Gelişim Orkestrası, a famous orchestra mostly focusing on jazz that still exists to this day. Before turning 20, he had already played music on the 1971 album “Nihayet” by the İstanbul Gelişim Orkestrası. His first solo album “Yol Verin A Dostlar” was released in 1988. He joined the Eurovision competition several times and worked as a trombone player and vocalist for the TRT Hafif Müzik ve Caz Orkestrası (TRT Light Music & Jazz Orchestra). Erkoç will perform as part of the 32nd Akbank Jazz Festival on October 2nd at the Robert College Alumni Assosociation – Bizim Tepe. The performance will include both original compositions and American jazz standards. Erkoç will be accompanied by Uraz Kıvaner on piano, Ozan Musluoğlu on upright bass, and Ferit Odman on drums.
Fatih Erkoç: Vocals
Uraz Kıvaner: Piano
Ozan Musluoğlu: Double bass
Ferit Odman: Drums
Kamucan Yalçın Duo
Kamucan Yalçın is a clarinetist and vocalist, who has over two decades of performance experience in jazz, rock, and related genres. In the project she has designed specifically for the 32nd Akbank Jazz Festival, she will take the stage with his long-time collaborator the guitarist Mehmet Mutlu. The two worked together for years under Yalçın’s project Karambola. In this new project, they have chosen to do what they love and tell the story of jazz music’s beginnings moving from the 1920s and 1930s to today with interpretations of jazz standards. The Kamucan Yalçın Duo will perform on October 2 at Postane Istanbul’s rooftop.
Kamucan Yalçın: Clarinet and vocals
Mehmet Mutlu: Electric guitar
HÜM is a trio that brings together three musicians who have spent years playing in various orchestras in the Oslo jazz scene. Bjørnar Kaldefoss Tveite, Magnus Sefaniassen Eide, and Bojan Marjanovic bring together their eccentric, individual experiences in sessions that employ shifting musical alphabets while leaving plenty of room for improvisation. HÜM enriches the aesthetic of Nordic jazz with textures verging on classical music and by employing unexpected rhythms. The trio uses a production method that lets each instrument shine without casting shadows over the others. Their debut album “Don’t Take It So Personally” came out in January 2022 via Losen Records. It contains engrossing sonic landscapes emerging from the flawless interaction among the instruments. The Norwegian group’s first Istanbul concert will take place on Tuesday, October 4 at Akbank Sanat.
Bjørnar Kaldefoss Tveite: Double bass
Magnus Sefaniassen Eide: Drums
Bojan Marjanovic: Piano
İmer Demirer Quartet feat. Ayşe Gencer & Sibel Köse
On Tuesday, October 4 on the stage of The Badau Akasya, we head out southward for an adventure. İmer Demirer, a world-renowned master on the trumpet and a person who had dedicated his life to jazz, will turn us toward that direction under the title “South.” Bringing the perspective of a contemporary artist to the classic question of whether geography is destiny, Demirer turns toward those lands where social and political turbulence pushes the boundaries of creativity. Ayşe Gencer and Sibel Köse, two of the most renowned vocalists of Turkey’s jazz scene, will sing a selection of songs with hints of South America, South Africa, Southern Europe, and the Mediterranean. With both solo songs and duets that showcase their friendship, the two will give voice to their musical journeys. Can Çankaya, who will play piano for the performance of “South,” is involved in various pursuits including composition, arrangement, and teaching. On the upright bass we have Apostolos Sideris, who is the heart of this project with his combination of jazz and Greek, Turkish, and Balkan musical elements. The drummer for the project is Berke Özgümüş, known for his work with the band REDD.
İmer Demirer: Trumpet
Can Çankaya: Piano
Apostolos Sideris: Double Bass
Berke Özgümüş: Drums
Ayşe Gencer: Vocals
Sibel Köse: Vocals
Mehmet Uluğ Gecesi: Volkan Öktem #7
On October 4, we will meet at Babylon to commemorate Mehmet Uluğ on the ninth anniversary of his passing. Each year the Akbank Jazz Festival organizes a Mehmet Uluğ Νight. This time, the stage belongs to Volkan Öktem #7. Öktem began playing drums and performing live at age 11 and since the 1980s has worked with musicians from Tuna Ötenel and Aydın Esen to Tarkan and Sertab Erener both on the stage and in the studio. He has also been a part of versatile groups like Habbecik, Laço Tayfa, Quartet Muartet, and MadenÖktemErsönmez. His first album #7, the first single of which will be released in September, draws on his musical career. He will bring this project to the stage of the 32nd Akbank Jazz Festival, which is where we will have the first chance to listen to the compositions on the album. At his festival performance, Öktem will be accompanied by Ercüment Orkut, Barış Doğukan Yazıcı, Halil İbrahim Işık, and Serhat Şensesli.
Ercüment Orkut: Keys
Barış Doğukan Yazıcı: Trumpet
Halil İbrahim Işık: Keys and Trumpet
Serhat Şensesli: Bass
Volkan Öktem: Drums
Efe Demiral Trio feat. Eren Turgut & Mert Can Bilgin “Kolaj”
Composer and producer Efe Demiral is a guitarist who has studied with names like Erkan Oğur, Ayşe Tütüncü, and Murat Opus on the fretless guitar and harmony. He released his first album “Inside Out” blending electro-acoustic elements with guitar music in 2016. While Demiral has collaborated with many musicians from the local scene on the stage and in the studio, he is mainly known for working with Eren Turgut on bass and Mert Can Bilgin on drums, as in the trio’s first album “Uyku Pansiyon” from 2019. The trio’s second album “Kolaj” was released by Shalgam Records in 2021. Like its title (“Collage” in English), it cannot be defined by a single theme. The album spans an axis from rock to jazz and is woven through with both minimalist and intricate touches. The album is full of color and enjoyable rhythmic dialogues. You can hear the trio perform songs from it on October 5 at Bova as part of the 32nd Akbank Jazz Festival. New media artist /da’s visual performance will accompany the trio on the stage.
Efe Demiral: Guitar
Eren Turgut: Bass
Mert Can Bilgin: Drums
Ofer Mizrahi Trio
The Ofer Mizrahi Trio unites the magic of ethnic melodies with a sensual musical approach, creating music that celebrates the gradual lifting of all traditional boundaries. Ofer Mizrahi is a musical wanderer who works between disciplines to discover life’s many nuances and instinctual sounds. He has designed a 24-string instrument called the Whale Guitar, which brings together both acoustic and electric sounds. In his compositions, we hear his invention accompanied by cello and double bass as they create a dialogue of unique musical inclinations, as in last year’s five-song live album. The Ofer Mizrahi Trio’s sound palette comes out of a seamless combination of Western, Turkish, and Indian music cultures with a jazz aesthetic. You can enjoy the enchanting audio experience offered by the trio at Babylon on October 5.
Ofer Mizrahi: The Whale Guitar
Mayu Shviro: Cello
David Michaeli: Double bass
Cape Town-born musician and composer Abdullah Ibrahim has been playing piano for more than 80 years. Throughout his career, both as a solo musician and as part of larger groups, he has pioneered the harmonizing of African music and styles from different geographies and periods. After playing in various orchestras in his youth, in 1959 he formed a septet called the Jazz Epistles with musicians like Kippie Moeketsi and Hugh Masekela. Together, they released their first album “Jazz Epistle, Verse 1” in 1960. Leaving behind the repression of the apartheid regime in his home country, Ibrahim went first to Europe and then to New York, where he worked with figures like Ornette Coleman, Pharoah Sanders, and Duke Ellington. He won awards for the soundtracks he composed for films like Claire Denis’ “Chocolat” (1988) and “No Fear, No Die.” He continues to work with his group Ekaya and various big bands. He most recently released the solo piano album “Solotude” was recorded live on his eighty-sixth birthday at Hirzinger Hall in Germany, during the 2020 lockdown, with no audience beyond a technical crew. Ibrahim is a critical figure not only for the jazz scene but for the history of global music. He will perform on October 6 at the Atatürk Kültür Merkezi.
Abdullah Ibrahim: Piano
Formed in 2005 by four friends who studied music together at the same school in London, the Portico Quartet continues its musical explorations beyond the established definitions of genre. Under the influences of electronica, jazz, ambient and classical in equal measure, the collective has changed skin and adopted new sonic identities at each stage of its career, releasing albums on established labels such as Real World, Ninja Tune, and Gondwana Records. Their debut album “Knee-Deep in the North Sea”
was Time Out’s “Jazz, Folk and World Music” album of the year 2007 and was nominated for the 2008 Mercury Prize. The Portico Quartet’s characteristic approach to the melodic percussive instrument known as the hang drum has become a key part of its sonic palette. Every composition by the group is innovative and compelling, each leading to a new adventure. The British group has reached perhaps the most productive period of its career with two albums in 2021 combining distinct musical aesthetics and a four-song EP in March 2022 titled “Next Stop.” You will be able to watch the Portico Quartet on stage at Babylon on October 6.
Duncan Bellamy: Drums
Milo Fitzpatrick: Double bass
Jack Wyllie: Soprano, Tenor Saxophones and Electronics
Taz Modi: Hang and Percussion
Gonzalo Rubalcaba & Aymée Nuviola
These two Grammy-winning Cuban musicians, Gonzalo Rubalcaba ve Aymée Nuviola, are actually childhood friends. Known as a piano genius, Rubalcaba was discovered by Dizzy Gillespie in 1985 and became a young phenomenon in the Latin jazz scene. He became a regular of the Blue Note catalog, working with legendary names like Bill Evans, Joe Lovano, and Ron Carter. Vocalist, composer and actress Aymée Nuviola has had her vocal talents compared to the likes of Billie Holiday and Celia Cruz. After studying at her country’s most prestigious music schools, she began to work on preserving Cuba’s musical and cultural heritage, even adding to them in the process. The first professional collaboration between these two musicians in their long careers took place during a 2020 tour. Their performance at Blue Note Tokyo turned into their first joint album, “Viento y Tiempo.” After the album was nominated for the Best Latin Jazz Album at the Grammys, their 2021 performance at the Marciac Jazz Festival in France was immortalized as the album “Live in Marciac.” These two living legends of Latin jazz will bring their rich rhythms, melodic nuances, and endless excitement grounded in decades of experience to an authentic Cuban night at the Zorlu PSM Turkcell Platinum Stage on October 7.
Aymée Nuviola: Voice
Gonzalo Rubalcaba: Piano
It would not be an exaggeration to describe flutist, saxophone player, producer, and founder of 22a record label DJ Ed “Tenderlonious” Cawthorne as a true musical explorer. He has become a guiding light of England’s jazz and underground scene with his albums journeying between various genres and aesthetics. In addition to his solo work, Tenderlonious’ band Ruby Rushton has created an intersection of the jazz aesthetic with Afrobeat, hip-hop, and electronic music. Throughout his career, he has engaged in collaborations that bring new interpretations to the musical traditions of various geographies. Some examples of his multidisciplinary approach are his album “Ragas From Lahore” recorded in Pakistan with Jaubi, or this year’s collaboration “Cosmica Italia” with Italian DJ and producer Lorenzo Moressi. One can never predict in advance what kind of rabbit Tenderlonious will pull out of his hat. You can watch his exhilarating performance on October 7 at Babylon.
Ed ‘Tenderlonious’ Cawthorne: Flute and soprano saxophone
Hamish Balfour: Keyboards
Pete Martin: Bass
Tim Carnegie: Drums
Emma-Jean Thackray is a London-based multi-instrumentalist, producer, and band leader. Last year, she released her fantastic debut album “Yellow,” a record that draws on cosmic themes and works through the full spectrum of jazz traditions while meandering through the back streets of electronic music all the way to hip-hop without ever losing its funkiness. After releasing two EPs in 2020, Thackray started her own imprint called Movementt under Warp Records. She is a unique figure within the new wave of jazz bubbling up in the UK and her work makes groove an essential part of polyphonic music. She builds her compositions around this mantra: “Move the body, move the mind, move the soul.” Her recordings have the energy of a live performance. The way she expands on their themes and movements live with enchanting improvisations has made her a favorite of the international festival circuit. Emma-Jean Thackray will be on stage at Babylon on the evening of October 8.
Emma-Jean Thackray: Trumpet and synthesizer
Dougal William Tyler: Drums
Lyle Kabir Barton: Keyboards
Matthew Gedrych: Bass
RAVI COLTRANE Cosmic Music
Saxophonist, composer, producer, and record company owner Ravi Coltrane is the son of John and Alice Coltrane. He was named after the legendary sitar musician Ravi Shankar. In his almost 30-year career, the Grammy-nominated musician has worked with people like Elvin Jones, Jack DeJohnette, McCoy Tyner, David Gilmour, and his cousin Flying Lotus. He released six albums between 1998 and 2012 as bandleader and also played a key role in the realization of his mother Alice Coltrane’s album “Translinear Light” (2004). As a producer and musician, he has been involved in countless projects, carrying his family’s boundless musical legacy to the four corners of the earth. At the same time, he runs the museum and foundation The Coltrane Home, located at his parents’ old home on Long Island. On October 8 at the Zorlu PSM Turkcell Platinum Stage, Ravi Coltrane will honor the careers of Alice and John Coltrane, two unique heroes of jazz history, by performing a repertoire made up entirely of their songs.
Gadi Lehavi: Keyboards
Lonnie Plaxico: Bass
Elé Howell: Drums
Ravi Coltrane: Saxophone
Oded Tzur Quartet
“The Coltrane Quartet of the 21st-century.” Japanese CD Journal describes the quartet led by New York-based Israeli saxophonist and composer Oded Tzur with these words. He developed his unique playing style throughout his years studying Classical Indian Music and added a new depth to the instrument. After releasing two albums as bandleader on Enja Records, he caught the attention of Manfred Eicher and became a part of the ECM Records family. His 2020 album “Here Be Dragons” has already been dubbed a modern classic. His 2022 album “Isabela,” with iconic cover art featuring a photograph by Sebastião Salgado, offers an idiosyncratic interpretation of the Indian raga tradition. Several music critics have described it as one of the most impactful works released by ECM in the last decade. The Oded Tzur Quarter will bring its story-like compositions to the Zorlu PSM Turkcell Platinum Stage on October 9.
Oded Tzur: Tenor Saxophone
Nitai Hershkovits: Piano
Petros Klampanis: Bass
Otis Brown III: Drums
Talk: Visual and Audio Experiences in the Age of New Media
In this talk, we will hear from three artists who produce from within different mediums. They will describe their creative processes, their works that bring together different branches of visual/audio art, and their experiences on stage both in Turkey and the world. Moderated by Gözde Sivişoğlu, the panel includes Istanbul-based new media artist Eda Urfalıoğlu; trumpet player and composer Barış Demirel, a unique voice from the alternative scene; and drummer and percussionist Nihal Saruhanlı, someone who has worked in various genres within many different projects. “Visual and Audio Experiences in the Age of New Media” will take place on October 1 at HOOD Base.
Listening Club “A song you listen to while strolling through the streets of the city”
Presented by fugamundi, “Listening Club” invites their participants to contemplate on the streets of the city. What do we listen to while we’re on our way to the places we love in the city? Which songs do we play during the commute to work or on our way back home? Which melodies do we choose to listen to when we are lost in the streets of a city that we have newly met? We are gathering together first to listen to the songs, and then have a conversation about them. “Listening Club” will take place as a part of 32nd Akbank Jazz Festival on October 2, before Kamucan Yalçın Duo’s performance at Postane Istanbul.
Talk: Voices Time Forgot
They became famous in the mid-1950s with an illustrious career moving from Las Vegas to Blue Note in record time.
By the 1980s, no one knew who they were anymore.
Their names and faces were suddenly forgotten.
Some of them began to be noticed again after 1995 for their Blue Note recordings.
Critics finished their reviews full of praise with a quick mea culpa.
The new generation of jazz lovers had neither seen or heard them.
After 2015, the Barcelona-based jazz label Fresh Sound began to release the old recordings of these once-legends of ephemeral fame, bringing them back into the light.
Today, we too will introduce you to these voices that time forgot.
Moderated by Hakan Rauf Tüfekçi, the panel will be held on October 8 at Decollage Art Space with the guest speakers Selen Gülün and Önder Focan.
Stop! Listen!: Jazz in Japan and Jazzu Kissa
This panel and listening will focus on the history of jazz in Japan, focusing particularly on the period after World War II and the rise of jazz in the 1970s. In this gathering “Jazz in Japan and Jazzu Kissa,” musician, collector, and researcher Eray Düzgünsoy will present various examples on vinyl of the country’s jazz culture. The talk has been organized as part of the Outro Music Store/Listening Shelter in Kadıköy’s event series “Stop! Listen!” It will give you the chance to explore the Japanese perspective on the globally popular J-Jazz and Jazzu Kissa. The event will take place on October 8. Capacity of the event is limited.
Talk: Women and Music in the Classical Age
When we examine archeological data from the seventh to fourth centuries BCE and texts by ancient writers, it is clear that women from various sectors of Ancient Greek society were involved with music either as amateurs or professionals. Women’s position in Ancient Greece varied depending on ethnicity or whether or not they were free or slaves. Though women generally lived relatively closed lives, the historical information available shows that playing music was a part of their lives, from cult ceremonies to wedding processions. For example, hetaerae who played musical instruments and sang for specifically male symposia had a professional relationship with music. Documents reveal details about the lives of women lyric performers, the most famous being Sappho. These women expressed both personal and social thoughts and feelings in their works.
The talk Women and Music in the Classical Age will take place on October 9 at Zuhal Müzik at Kanyon, with Dr. Işık Şahin, Esra Kayıkçı as guest speakers and Hülya Tunçağ as the moderator.
Moderator: Hülya Tunçağ
Speakers: Dr. Işık Şahin, Musician & Archeologist (MA) Esra Kayıkçı
Workshop: What Does the City Tell Us?
A wild Compositions of Istanbul Orchestra
Age group: 7-9
In the Compositions of Istanbul session of the workshop series What Does the City Tell Us? we will create a composition inspired by Istanbul’s sounds, noise, motions, and rhythms. At the same time, we will be using a creative tool that is a form of sign language known as soundpainting. Afterward, we will perform our composition using the orchestra we put together. The workshop will be led by soundpainting practitioner Burcu Yılmaz. She will be accompanied by musician Çağıl Kaya on vocals and flute.
Workshop: What Does the City Tell Us?
A wild Istanbul’s Rhythms Orchestra
Age group: 9-12
In the Istanbul’s Rhythms session of the workshop series What Does the City Tell Us? we will focus on Istanbul’s rhythmic textures. We will discover what Istanbul’s rhythm is for each of us by exploring the sounds we hear while wandering the city, the motions we witness, and what the city makes us feel. Afterward, we will perform our composition using the orchestra we put together by using a creative tool known as soundpainting which draws on sign language. The workshop will be led by soundpainting practitioner Burcu Yılmaz, who will be accompanied by musician Onur Başkurt on percussion.
Workshop: What Does the City Tell Us?
A wild Istanbul’s Unusual Sounds Orchestra
Age group: 9-12
Toy Museum (Oyuncak Müzesi)
In the Istanbul’s Unusual Sounds session of the workshop series What Does the City Tell Us? we will focus on the various sounds of the city. In the normal course of our lives, there are sounds we hear but don’t pay attention to, sounds we don’t even notice, or even those we notice and that bother us. In this workshop, we will dive into these sounds and give them new meanings. After this, we will put together an orchestra and perform a composition bringing together these unusual sounds of the city using a creative tool known as soundpainting which draws on sign language. The workshop will be led by soundpainting practitioner Burcu Yılmaz, who will be accompanied by musician Orhan Deniz on bass clarinet.