NEFES ENSEMBLE: INSPIRING MUSICAL COLLABORATIONS IN MELBOURNE – TAASA Review December 2011
Susan Scollay Melbourne music lovers recently enjoyed a unique fusion of classical western music and the sounds and atmosphere of Asia.
The Nefes Ensemble, who perform the music of the Ottoman court and the music of the Sufis, joined musicians from the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra in presenting the The Four Seasons and the 1001 Nights. Antonio Vivaldi’s well-known four concertos, Le Quattro Stagioni, first published in 1725 were embellished by a solo improvisation (taksim) on a different Ottoman/Turkish instrument Nefes Ensemble’s repertoire ranges across 500 years of Ottoman history, including the 13th century music of the sema, or spiritual ceremony of the Mevlevi Sufis, widely known in the west as the Tulip Age’ in the reign of Sultan Ahmet III in the early 18th century when the Ottoman court rivalled that of Versailles for its lavish parties and entertainments. The group’s next exciting collaboration is with the Victorian Youth Opera under the direction of Richard Gill.
Nefes musicians will join the first ever performance in Australia of The Play of Daniel, a medieval miracle play considered a forerunner of opera...