A Sufi and Bach concert is to take place for commemorating the 20th anniversary of the announcement of the town twinning between Cologne and Istanbul in 1997. The Kölner Akademie Orchestra and Turkish music group of Üsküdar University, the Sufi Music Ensemble will take the stage at Üsküdar University together for a night of a mixture of Western and Eastern music bringing together classical notes from the West and mystic tunes of Eastern Sufism on April 7.
The Kölner Akademie Orchestra, conducted by Michael Alexander Willens, will perform two works by Johann Sebastian Bach, inspired by the church music of the 17th century. "Wer nur den lieben Gott lasst walten" is based on the hymn of Georg Neumark with the same name and "Was willst du dich betrüben" is on a hymn of poet and composer Johann Heerman, both with themes of faith and submission to God's will.
The Sufi Music Ensemble, on the other hand, will be performing Sufi music based on the poets of Rumi, who discuss spiritual unity and indoctrinates us to find the spiritual path leading to God beyond worldly possessions and realities we have no power of altering and other scholars who had a major part in shaping and improving Sufism.
With a very extensive orchestra repertoire spanning the 17th century Baroque era to contemporary times, the award-winning Kölner Akademie Orchestra performs both renowned and sometimes relatively less popular composers' works with modern and classical instruments in an impressive manner. It rarely focused on CD recordings and strives to be truthful to the classical seating arrangements and previously rendered versions of the works they select.
The orchestra was praised by music critics with their extraordinary concerts and performances at festivals in Europe, South America, Turkey, Japan and Taiwan, all of which were either broadcasted on radio or TV.
Their first CD recorded by Johann Valentin Meders, "Passion für Raumklang," was given five stars by Goldber, Fono Forum and Musik und Kirsche, a popular magazine of church music. In addition, it has received appraisal from other magazines including Concerto, Early Music Fanfare Magazine and Record Geijutsu (Japan).