Wednesday, 17 July 2024


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Pera Ensemble
The sound from Orient and Occident
l'arte del mondo
Internationale Kulturprojekte
Music for all senses

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Simone Kermes - Sopran
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The Leipzig-born Simone Kermes is one of the most sought after sopranos internationally for dramatic coloratura roles. Her remarkable vocal range predestines her particularly for the virtuoso works of baroque masters such as Handel and Vivaldi but also for Mozart‘s, Haydn`s and Beethoven`s sopranos and concert arias. Simone Kermes was born in Leipzig and studied under Helga Forner at the „Felix- Mendelssohn Bartholdy“ University of Music and Theatre in her home town. She graduated and completed two postgraduate studies, all with distinction. She won first prize in the Felix-Mendelssohn Bartholdy Competition in Berlin and was the Bach prize winner in 1996 of the International Johann Sebastian Bach Competition in Leipzig.

Florin Cezar Ouatu - Countertenor
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Florin Cezar Ouatu was born in Romania in 1980. Grown in a musicians’ family, he began his musical studies at the Academy of Art and Music in his home town, where he obtained the piano and choral direction diploma. In 1998 he began the study of singing, immediately distinguishing himself as a rare „falsettista“. In 2001 he was admitted at the Conservatory of Milan, where he graduated with special mention in 2004, under the guidance of Margaret Hayward. He attended masterclasses with Jordi Savall, Sara Mingardo, René Clemencic and Mariana Nicolesco. He won several prestigious international competitions, including „Francisco Viñas“ of Barcelona (Best Countertenor), „Competizione dell’Opera“ of Dresden (First Prize), „Riccardo Zandonai“ of Riva del Garda (Jury Special Prize), Voice Competition „Renata Tebaldi“ of San Marino (Baroque Prize) and „Spiros Argiris“ Prize of Sarzana. He has performed in concert in Italy and abroad and has frequently appeared with La Cappella Musicale of Lodi and Claudio Monteverdi Choir of Crema.

Ahmet Özhan
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He was born in Urfa in 1950. During his primary and secondary education in various cities -because of his father’s civil cervant post- he had his first music lessons from his family. Then he completed his music education at Istanbul Municipal Conservatory and at Üsküdar Music Society where he was educated by Emin Ongan who is known as a valuable master. Up to 1991, he continued his musical life with various records and stage works together with his artistry at Istanbul Radio.

In 1991, he was appointed to Istanbul Historical Turkish Music Ensemble as the General Director. He is a “State Artist” since 1998. He performed in some musical documentary movies like “Hacı Arif Bey”, “Aliş” and “Hafiz Yusuf Efendi”. He represented our country at the Asian Music Festival in Singapore.

He is sharing musical accumulation with art lovers; by attending the commemoration of Mevlana since 1980, the Istanbul Festival since 1984, by performing classical and mystic music concerts called “Güldeste” in homeland and abroad; from Tokyo to San Francisco. He got lots of awards as a performer and a television programmer. He made a mystic music album including 5 CDs called “Ateş-i Aşk”, one of them includes the works of Sultans called “Padishah Compositors” and one mystic music album is called “İlahiyat-ı Kenan”. He performed in these albums with his ensemble where he works as a soloist and the General Director at the same time.

In 2002 he released a classical Turkish music album called “Rüya (Dream)”. He directed and presented a music program called “Şarkılar Seni Söyler” at a private television channel for about four years; he was also the soloist. He still continues to make programs to TRT Istanbul Television with the ensemble. He participated both in the preparation of music demonstrations called “Lyrical History” and “Tolerance Empire” and the concerts as a soloist with the ensemble.

Werner Ehrhardt - Conductor
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Werner Ehrhardt, from Cologne, frequently appears as a guest conductor with orchestras on the international stage. He studied historical performance practice under Sigiswald Kuijken in Brussels, Belgium, and conducting under Professor Karl-Heinz Bloemeke in Detmold, Germany. Perpetual curiosity and a pronounced interest in different ways of approaching music led him to continue intensive study under Kato Havas at Oxford and Professor Renate Peter in Cologne. As the artistic director of the world renowned Concerto Koeln chamber orchestra from 1985 to 2005, Werner Ehrhardt developed a characteristic style of interpretation based on historical performance practice. He founded l’arte del mondo in 2004 and turned to traditional orchestras as well. He has since given highly acclaimed performances with numerous international opera, symphony, and chamber orchestras, including the orchestra of the Stuttgart State Opera, the Berlin Konzerthaus Orchestra, the Bern Symphony Orchestra, the Hamburg Symphonic Orchestra, Capriccio Basel, the Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra, the Neuss German Chamber Academy, and the Geneva Chamber Orchestra.

Mehmet C. Yeşilçay - Ud
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As founder and musical director of the ensembles PERA, FERAHFEZA and EMRE, concerts with the ensemble Sarband, also with the Concerto Köln and Jordi Savall, Mehmet C. Yeşilçay is international well-known as a musician and composer. He established his reputations with concerts and adaptations of works of Eric Satie, concerts with big Sufi orchestras (Mevlevi), including conducts at the Münchener Philharmonie, compositions and revisions of Handel’s arias for the soprano Edita Gruberova, as well as numerous compositions for various orchestrations (e.g. his composition QUN). He works closely together with Werner Ehrhardt and his ensemble L’arte del mondo, which results in various recordings and concerts of their two programs (La Fete du Serail and One God).

Concerts with Jordi Savall and Hesperion XXI brought him to South America and for the Mevlana commemorative year 2007 of the UNESCO, he compiled „Ich bin Wind, Du bist Feuer“ in collaboration with the Bergische Symphoniker (Soloist: Ahmet Öhzan).

Further decorations are the music award of the Turkish broadcaster TRT, nomination for the cultural award of Munich, soundtracks and productions in the field of electronical and jazz music, a Dolby-Surround 5.1 production of his Club Markiz, his solo album Ex Oriente Lux and numerous productions in the area of World Music, Pop and traditional Turkish music.

l'arte del mondo
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l’arte del mondo stands for the creation, development, and execution of music projects that bring cultures, artistic forms of expression, and eras together. The ensemble and the supporting team under artistic director Werner Ehrhardt acquaint a broad audience with the music through a variety of engaging experiences. Music, dance, and literature of different eras, regions, and genres Under the aegis of l’arte del mondo, different elements are integrated into an overall concept. Both established and young artists from a range of cultures introduce the public to music, dance, and literature of different eras, regions, and genres.

l’arte del mondo starts where mainstream concerts end. A poetic concept of concerts underlies stories conveying different kinds of encounters – those between cultural environments, periods of music history, and genres of art.

Historical performance practice as a basis
The projects by l’arte del mondo key on historical performance practice and the rich sonority of period instruments. The ensemble sees this orientation to previous traditions of music as an ideal foundation for emotional and sensory encounters with new music and other forms of artistic expression.
Pera Ensemble
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The Pera-Ensemble, named after a district of Istanbul, where people from different origins, races, religions and cultures are meeting since the antiquity, was established in 2005 by the Istanbul-born musicians Mehmet Cemal Yesilcay and Ihsan Özer.
On stage, Pera combines the musical traditions of the Ottoman’s music vowels and instrumental virtuosity together with the historical and contemporary European music; whereby the musical functioning is based on musicological and historical research.

Through the ambitions of the conductor Mehmet C. Yesilcay, the group strikes new musical paths and opens new possibilities and prospects, which were unknown heretofore.
Hence, the ensemble is addicted to perform so far unknown or reconstructed versions of old works. Above all, rare performed repertoire stands in the interests of the musical work of the group. As „seekers“ in this field of music, Pera brings up works of music, which were wrongfully passed out of mind and wants to reintroduce them to the public at large. Profound researches and vivid, fresh music making indicates the work of the ensemble.

At the centre of attentions stands the exchange with classical, European music. Similarities and differences should be shown, as well as news sounds should be created through musical symbiosis: „Music without borders“, but without losing its own identity.
All members of the group distinguish themselves through a lot of international performances and teaching.

The Pera-Ensemble works closely together with L’arte del mondo. Several concerts with the programs „La Fete du Serail“, „1 God“ and the pastiche „Armida“ deepen the collaboration of the two ensembles.
This multifarious group, whose size and constitution can be adapted according to the program, is casted with masters of their trades.

Future projects will lead the ensemble, inter alia, to the „Schwetzinger Musikfestspiele“.

Mehmet C. Yesilcay: Ud, Perkussion
Ihsan Özer: Kanun, Halile
Hasan Esen: Kemençe, Rebab, Viola D' amore
Volkan Yilmaz: Ney
David Kuckhermann: Perkussion
Ahmet Özhan: Gesang