`ILLUMINATIONS OF THE HEART’: MUSIC FROM THE OTTOMAN COURT – TAASA Review September 2009
Susan Scollay F or lovers of the arts of Asia, one of the most interesting musical groups performing at next year’s Adelaide Festival is Melbourne’s Nefes Ensemble.
Comprising several classically trained members of the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and additional musicians of diverse musical and cultural backgrounds, the ensemble specialises in classical music from the Ottoman Turkish court. Nefes Ensemble including their founder, cellist Rachel Atkinson (centre back), perform in Melbourne with the Turkish ney master, Kudsi Erguner (2nd from R) and aboriginal didgeridoo players. Founded last year by Rachel Atkinson, a talented cellist with the MSO and Peter Daverington, a ney, or reed-flute specialist, Nefes (the word means Orientalist’ movement were becoming more interested in eastern culture.
Composers such as Beethoven, Haydn and Mozart were influenced by the percussive rhythms of Ottoman music, and in 1827 Guiseppe Donizetti, the brother of the renowned Italian opera composer, was appointed by Sultan Mahmud II (r...