The 29th International İzmir Festival organized by the İzmir Culture, Arts and Education Foundation (İKSEV) kicks off today at 8:30 p.m. with performances by renowned musicians and a ceremony at the Ahmed Adnan Saygun Arts Center. The opening concert will be given by the Luigi Cherubini Youth Orchestra, which was founded by conductor Riccardo Muti, who has received many honors from different countries. The orchestra will perform Schubert's "Overture in D Major in the Italian Style, Op. 170" and Mozart's "Symphony No. 35 in E Major." The concert's second section will feature works by Giuseppe Verdi. Acting as a representative of Cuban music since 1997, the Buena Vista Social Club will perform on June 29 in İzmir's Çeşme district. Traveling to Turkey as part of its farewell tour, the band features Omara Portuondo, Eliades Ochoa, Guajiro Mirabal, Barbarito Torres and Jesus Aguaje Ramos.
Violinist Itzhak Perlman will greet an İzmir audience on May 30 accompanied by pianist Rohan De Silva. On June 16, pianist Janusz Olejniczak, who performed the songs in the famous Roman Polanski film "Pianist," will present a special repertoire featuring pieces by Chopin and Debussy. The festival program also includes the Soul Rebels Brass Band whose members grew up with the tradition of New Orleans jazz.
Characterized as "the crazy organ virtuoso" thanks to his extraordinary style, Cameron Carpenter will perform on June 18 in İzmir for the first time in Europe with his special instrument, the "International Touring Organ-ITO." He is certain to delight the audience in İzmir with his shining organ and repertoire composed of works by Shostakovich, Bach, Dupre, Chopin, Bernstein and Scriabin. During the festival, Ege University State Conservatory of Turkish Music's Turkish Folk Dances Company will present their dance show "Üç Mehmet'in Dansı" (Dance of Three Mehmets), and the Franz Liszt Chamber Orchestra will perform with the Arkas Trio.
As part of the Contemporary Calling Acapella Vocal Music Project, soloists of the Sagittarius Vocal Ensemble conducted by Frenchman Michel Laplenie, soprano and musicologist Çimen Seymen and some young Turkish soloists will perform works by Ahmed Adnan Saygun, Ulvi Cemal Erkin and lesser-known works by French composers Maurice Ravel and Francis Poulenc. Soprano Peola Santucci, tenor Vincenzo Mario Sarinelli and pianist Mairizio Abeni will be accompanied by the Italian Chamber Music Company on stage. The Ballet Grand Theatre de Geneve, which will perform Ken Ossola's "Lux" and Andonis Faniadakis's "Glory," will close the festival. The festival, which will run until July 2, will take place at the Ahmed Adnan Saygun Arts Center, Ege University, Atatürk Cultural Center, Celcus Library, Ephesus Odeon, Çeşme Open-air Theater, Kültürpark Open-air Theater and İzmir University of Economics Open-air Performance Center.
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