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Bilkent Symphony Orchestra and Bilkent Youth Orchestra
Hometown: Ankara, Turkey
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The Bilkent Symphony Orchestra was founded in 1993 as an original artistic project of Bilkent University. Developed by the Faculty of Music and Performing Arts, the orchestra is composed of over 90 proficient artists and academicians of the Faculty from Turkey and 12 countries. Turkish and foreign artists, continuing their post graduate studies at the Institute of Music and Performing Arts also participate in concerts to further expand the orchestra. With these characteristics the Bilkent Symphony Orchestra, is the first private, international and academic, artistic ensemble in Turkey.

Starting as the 'Bilkent Sinfonietta' the symphonic orchestra now has the identity of an ensemble of orchestras, comprising the 'Bilkent Chamber Orchestra' an 'Ensemble of Wind Instruments' and various other orchestral formations. With Turkish and foreign guest conductors, soloists and choirs, the ensemble of orchestras has distinguished itself through its season events of over 80 concerts per year and the television and radio broadcasts of these performances. The national label Bilkent Music Production has released over 30 CD's of the orchestras concerts. Amongst the Orchestra's latest recordings are the Tchaikovsky and Sancan piano concertos with Jean-Philippe Collard under the baton of Emil Tabakov for EMI. Productions for release in 2007 include A.Adnan Saygun's piano, violin and violoncello concertos by CPO in collaboration with Peer Musik and the Tabakov Concerti by Naxos.

Through events such as the 'Bilkent Concert Series', 'Turkish Composers Week', 'Education Concerts' and 'The Bilkent International Anatolia Music Festival', the orchestra aims to bring a wide range of activities to large audiences, to spread the appreciation of music at national level, undertake international activities and develop cooperation with institutions abroad. Along these objectives the orchestra has toured to Italy (1998), Germany (2000), Belgium (2001), Portugal (2000) and to Switzerland (2002-2004 Montreux Festival). In February 2004 the orchestra has toured to Tokyo (Japan).

Among the artists the orchestra has performed with are İdil Biret, Robert Cohen, Jean-Philippe Collard, Costas Cotsiolis, Patrick Gallois, Suna Kan, Elisabeth Leonskaja, Mischa Maisky, Silvia Marcovici, Mintcho Mintchev, Shlomo Mintz, Lang Lang, Christiane Oelze, Gülsin Onay, Ferhan and Ferzan Önder, Güher-Süher Pekinel, Mihail Pletnev, Viktoria Postnikova, György Sandor, Fazıl Say, Hüseyin Sermet, Dimitris Sgouros, the Rome and Bulgarian State Philharmonic and Radio Choirs. The BSO has performed under guest conductors such as, Vladimir Ashkenazy, Gürer Aykal, Serge Baudo, Alexander Dimitriev, Erol Erdinç, Massimo Freccia, Jean Fournet, Rengim Gökmen, Howard Griffiths, Peter Gülke, Ernest Martinez Izquierdo, Yoel Levi, Karl Anton Rickenbacher, Gennady Rozhdestvensky, Nello Santi and Lior Shambadal.

Continuing its 2006-2007 concert season under the artistic direction of Isin Metin with music director Maestro Emil Tabakov, the orchestra and its ensembles will be welcoming audiences at the Bilkent Concert Hall (800) and Bilkent ODEON (4000). To mark the 100th year of A.Adnan Saygun's birth, The Bilkent Symphony Orchestra will be presenting a series of concerts during its 2006-07 and 2007-08 seasons featuring the composers works in collaboration with the Bilkent A. Adnan Saygun Center for Music Research.

Bilkent Symphony Orchestra and Bilkent Youth Orchestra
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