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Guide to the Istanbul Music Festival


48th Istanbul Music Festival (Online)

Organised by the Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts (İKSV) with the support of the Republic of Turkey Ministry of Culture and Tourism, the 48th Istanbul Music Festival will meet music lovers virtually between 18 September and 5 October 2020. Curated around this year’s theme, The Enlightened World of Beethoven, the festival concerts filmed at historical venues in Istanbul, Ankara and various cities of Europe will be available for streaming on online.iksv.org for audiences to enjoy on their screens.

The online festival will kick off with the Opening Concert to be streamed online for free on online.iksv.org and İKSV’s YouTube channel on 18 September. All concerts from the festival programme will be available for audiences both in Turkey and around the world with stunning image and sound quality, and accessible ticket prices.

Concert tickets will go on sale at a single ticket price of 20 TRY. The audiences will also be able to purchase a bundle ticket that is valid for all the concerts for 250 TRY. As part of the festival, a new concert will be open to stream every day as of 18 September, and the concerts will be accessible for 30 days. Viewers will be able to stream the concerts for 7 days after they start watching.

Concert recordings at historical venues

The 48th Istanbul Music Festival concerts were filmed by professional crews at historical venues Istanbul, Ankara and various cities of Europe, with ensembles such as the Borusan Istanbul Philharmonic Orchestra, Tekfen Philharmonic Orchestra, Wiener Akademie, Bilkent Symphony Orchestra, Kheops Ensemble, Philharmonix, Beethoven Trio Berlin, Borusan Quartet, Semplice Quartet and with soloists like Thomas Hampson, Víkingur Ólafsson, Benjamin Schmid, Anna Tifu, Bülent Evcil, Derya Türkan, Yurdal Tokcan, Gökhan Aybulus, Ezgi Karakaya, and Pelin Halkacı Akın.

The concert venues include the Theodosius Cistern, Palace of the Porphyrogenitus, Khedive Palace, Tophane-i Amire Culture and Art Centre, Harbiye Saint Esprit Cathedral, Surp Ohan Vosgeperan Armenian Catholic Church, Süreyya Opera House in Istanbul, and the Abbaye de Stavelot, Wonderfeel Festival Site, Schubertkirche in Belgium, Germany, Austria, and the Netherlands.

Festival tickets

Tickets for the 48th Istanbul Music Festival will be on sale on biletix.com with a standard price of 20 TRY as of 10.30 on Friday, 4 September. The audiences will also be able to purchase a bundle ticket that is valid for all the concerts for 250 TRY.

Priority sales for Tulip Card members are on Wednesday, 2 September for Black and White Tulip, and Thursday, 3 September for Red, Orange and Yellow Tulip members at 10.30. Black and White Tulip Card holders are entitled to a discount of 25% while 20% discount is applicable for Red, Orange and Yellow Tulip Card holders.

With the Eczacıbaşı Culture & Art Card, 2000 university students in Turkey between 18-25 years of age received 250 TRY that can be used until the end of 2020 for İKSV events and Istanbul Museum of Modern Art. Eczacıbaşı Culture & Art Card holders will also be able to use their cards from 10.30 on Friday, 4 September to purchase tickets for the Istanbul Music Festival concerts.

Festival celebrates the 250th anniversary of Beethoven’s birth

In 2020, the 48th Istanbul Music Festival, centered on the theme The Enlightened World of Beethoven celebrates the 250th birthday of Ludwig van Beethoven, along with the rest of the world. The festival will feature iconic works of the composer, as well as new commissions and projects inspired by his music.

The Istanbul Music Festival programme evokes the essential aspects of the composer’s music such as the 'love of nature', 'love of humanity' and 'innovative and visionary music language'. With his bold musical language, Beethoven defied the boundaries of musical genres of his time and set new standards that still influence the music world and manifest in most of the festival performances.

Free festival events on İKSV’s YouTube channel

Besides the Opening Concert and Weekend Classics of the 48th Istanbul Music Festival that will be accessible for free at online.iksv.org and İKSV’s YouTube channel, the festival will present a series of talks on art history and music, pre-concert talks and children's workshops on İKSV YouTube channel. The online events will be held in Turkish only, except the yoga session that will accompany Weekend Classics - II to be held in English.

For more information, visit the Istanbul Music Festival website.

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