The 28th International İzmir Culture and Arts Festival, set to begin on June 4, will feature many renowned musicians from a wide variety of genres over three months
İZMİR — Covering a wide-spectrum of classical and contemporary art performances, the 28th International İzmir Festival will be held from June 4 and Sept. 3 by the İzmir Foundation for Culture, Art and Education (İKSEV). Attracting attendance from locals and foreigners alike, the festival will cover a wide range of classical, traditional and contemporary works in music, ballet, theater and opera as well as performances from international artists at unique historical venues including the ancient and magnificent Ephesus Antique Theater.
The festival will welcome Polish conductor and composer Krzysztof Penderecki with worldfamous Sinfonia Varsovia (Warsaw Symphony) during the opening concert on June 14 at the Ephesus Antique Theater on the Aegean Coast. Turkish-born pianist and composer Hüseyin Sermet will give a solo recital. Boasting an eclectic repertoire and pianistic versatility, Sermet has won major international prizes and performed all over the world in his 30-year career. Marking the 600th year of the diplomatic relations between Poland and Turkey, Polish Baroque Orchestra "Arte dei Suonatori" will perform "Alla Polacca, Alla Turca" with internationally renowned baroque violinist Rachel Podger on June 18, at the Library of Celsus.
The festival, which over the years has proved to be one of the cultural and intellectual cornerstones of Turkey, will welcome the Silk Road Ensemble under the acclaimed cellist and song writer Yo-Yo Ma's artistic direction at festival's closing performance at the Ahmet Adnan Saygun Art Center on Sept. 3. The world's most famous living cellist has won 16 Grammy Awards. The Swiss-German Amaryllis Quartett including young violinists Gustav Frielinghaus and Lena Wirth, violist Lena Eckels and cellist Yves Sandoz on June 25 at the Hagia Haralambos Church.
The İzmir State Opera and Ballet Orchestra will take perform with conductor Lukas Karytinos and Greek tenor Mario Grangoulis and Turkish soprano Aytül Büyüksaraç on June 27 while young artists will also have chance to mesmerize art enthusiasts at the İzmir Economy University Performing Center on July 5.
Mezzosoprano Liliana Zalesinska and pianist Szczepan Konczal will be at the St. John Baptist Church in İzmir's Selçuk district on July 9, two days before the Italian music group Quartetto Di Venezia to enchant music lovers at the Library of Celsus on July 11.
July's schedule also includes the Martha Graham Dance Company exclusively for professional dance artists between June 10-19 and July 13-17.
New York's oldest performing dance company was founded by late modern dancer Martha Graham, often called the "Picasso of Dance." The public audience can watch the group's performance under the artistic direction of Janet Eilber on July 17 at the İzmir's Culture Park Open Theater.
İzmir Foundation for Culture Arts and Education, founded in 1985 has been organizing the festival since 1987. İzmir, known as the cradle of civilization, the motherland of epic poet Homer and famous philosopher Heraclitus has been the home of the festival for 27 years.
Featuring world renowned artists, the festival has proudly provided opportunities to numerous great artists to perform at the unique ancient venues including the Great Theatre of Ephesus, which is one of the best preserved antique theatres worldwide; and the House of Virgin Mary, which is the meeting point of thousands of Catholics from all over the world among others.