Musical Performance: Ahmet Erdoğdular - Istanbul Improvisations, with Turkish ney master Ömer Erdoğdular

Fri, November 4, 2011 9:00 pm at Alwan for the Arts

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Ahmet Erdoğdular- vocals, percussion and tanbur
Ömer Erdoğdular - ney
Mavrothis Kontanis - 'oud

Celebrated Turkish singer Ahmet Erdoğdular returns to Alwan in a presentation of the beautiful classical Ottoman-Turkish and Sufi repertoire as well as vocal improvisations (gazel), This concert features guest artist, renowned Turkish ney master Ömer Erdogdular, who will also teach a Turkish classical music workshop at Alwan the following day. Both are joined by the gifted oudist and singer, Mavrothis Kontanis.


Regular: $20 (buy now),Student/Senior/Member$15 (buy now).* Student and member IDs will be checked at the door.

*A small surcharge is applied to online ticket purchases; use printout as your proof of purchase.Tickets are also available at the door. Doors open at 8:30pm.

About the Musicians:

Ahmet Erdoğdular is one of the most important musicians of the new generation in Turkish classical music. Studying the Ottoman repertoire and following its style, Ahmet restored from history such vocal classical compositions askar, beste, naat,anddurakto present. Analyzing the techniques of old masters of Ottoman music, he learned and preserved many of the classical vocal improvisational forms includinggazelandkaside. Ahmet recorded music and performed in concerts as a lead singer while still a teenager. Starting at an early age with his father, neyzen Ömer Erdoğdular, he continued his musical development with the guidance of the renowned musician Niyazi Sayın. Ahmet graduated from the Istanbul Technical University State Conservatory where he completed his master’s degree in Turkish classical music. Ahmet's two latest albumsSongs of the Sultans-Masterpieces of Turkish Classical MusicandNiyaz-Sufi Songs of Lovewere released in New York and received worldwide attention.Ahmet Erdoğdular participated in various festivals in Europe, Asia, and the United States performing both Ottoman classical and Sufi music.He was a visiting scholar at Columbia University and City University of New York, Graduate Center Ethnomusicology department. Ahmet Erdoğdular plays tanbur, oud and percussion and devotes his time to performing and teaching Ottoman Turkish classical music. He is based in New York and Istanbul. Website:

Ömer Erdoğdular started studying music while still a child. He was born in Konya and grew up in Istanbul, initially learning ney from his father. In 1965 he began studying with Ümit Gürelman, and soon after started lessons with Niyazi Sayın, which continued for many years. In the following two decades, he participated in many radio and TV programs, orchestras and concerts in a period when ney just began to be rediscovered in Turkey. In 1980 he first appeared in concert with the famous soloist Bekir Sıtkı Sezgin, and from then on played in most of his concerts.

From 1984 to 1987, Ömer Erdoğdular was a "neyzen" in Nevzat Atlığ's Ministry of Culture Classical Turkish Music Chorus. He made several recordings, among them with Bekir Sıtkı Sezgin, tanburi Necdet Yaşar and kemençevi İhsan Özgen. In 1987 he became a member of the Ministry of Culture's State Classical Turkish Music Ensemble founded by Necdet Yaşar of which he is still an active member. As a soloist, a member of the State Classical Turkish Music Ensemble and also the Necdet Yaşar Ensemble, Ömer Erdoğdular performed around Turkey and in Europe, United States, Japan and the Middle East, participating in various festivals, concerts and recitals. He devotes a significant amount of his time to teaching, both in Turkey, giving lessons and teaching in workshops, and in seminars abroad, such as the Labyrinth Musical Workshop in Greece, Makamhane in Austria and the Sufi Music Retreat in the United States of America. Website:

Mavrothi T. Kontanis was born in 1979 in Pennsylvania, though his family’s origin is from Halkidiki, Greece. As a child, he showed interest in several instruments, including the clarinet, guitar, and bouzouki. However, at the age of 16 he discovered his true passion, the oud, and began lessons with his first teacher Stamatis Merzanis immediately. Since then he has studied with many other renowned masters including Münir N. Beken, Emin Gündüz, John Berberian, Kyriakos Kalaitzides, Dinçer Dalkılıc, Yurdal Tokcan, and Ara Dinkjian. In addition to playing oud, Mavrothi has become an accomplished singer and violinist, performs on baglama, tzoura, and tamboura, and also enjoys teaching and writing. Mavrothi has performed throughout the United States, Europe, and the Middle East playing traditional and classical music from all over the world, as well as original compositions of his own with various ensembles. He has been featured on several albums and the film soundtrack of “AmericanEast,” and released two albums in the Spring of 2008 that showcase the oud and diversity of sounds from the Aegean region. By combining his love for classical, urban, and folk music from Greece and the Near East, Mavrothi hopes to heighten awareness of the great beauty and freedom that exist within this unique and diverse musical tradition, especially through the Maeandros Ensemble, which he founded in 2006.

Last updated: 2011-10-25 17:16:10

Ömer Erdoğdular
Ömer Erdoğdular
Ahmet Erdoğdular
Ahmet Erdoğdular

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