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  • Rich Mix 34-47 Bethnal Green Road London, England, E1 6HT United Kingdom (map)

Dash Arts, Kazum and Nest Collective present


Haunting lyrical songs and music from across the cultural borderlands of Turkey and Armenia with Vardan on the Armenian flute, the duduk, and Emre on the saz.

With support from the Armenian Institute

Vardan Hovanissian (duduk)

Vardan Hovanissian is recognised as a specialist in traditional Armenian woodwind instruments. The duduk, a double-reed instrument dating from the 5th century BC, reflects the very sound and soul of Armenia, and its warm timbre is increasingly appreciated by audiences all over the world. Strongly rooted in traditional Armenian music, Vardan almost naturally creates links with the music of neighboring territories such as Turkey and Syria, and with other European folk and jazz influences.

Vardan has performed with the National Folk Music Ensemble and bands such as Gandzsar, Marathouk & Ervand Saharouny in Armenia. His encounter with Tigran and Yasmin Levy was the catalyst for fruitful collaborations around the world, leading to concerts in Europe, Canada, Australia and Asia with Yasmin Levy, Arax, Hijaz and Blindnote.

Emre Gültekin (saz, baglama, vocals, tanbur)

In the Gültekin family, playing music is as natural as breathing. Born in 1980 in La Louvière (Belgium), Emre discovered music thanks to his father Lütfü Gültekin teaching him to play the saz, a long-necked lute capable of generating the most subtle harmonies. Elusive and complex, crossing cultural boundaries, the instrument was widely adopted throughout the Middle East – ranging even to Siberia – in various forms, but it was in Anatolian music that it reached its artistic apogee and greatest expression, with great masters such as Talip Ozkan and Mustafa Karaçeper, who also directly instructed Emre and his father Lütfü, whose compositions play an important role in the Turkish folk song repertoire.

Today Emre is an accomplished artist in his own right, engaged in many musical projects and interacting with diverse influences, with musicians from many different backgrounds, from Malick Pathe Sow (Senegal) to Goran Bregovic (Serbia), to Véronique Gillet (Belgium) and Dadmehr (Iran). He also plays in groups such as Blindnote and his family group Gültekinler and has started to write film music alongside his day job as a sound engineer.