Ensemble Kudsi Erguner

Kudsi Erguner comes from a family of musicians. Through his meetings with many master players of the older generation, he has been able to steep himself in the authentic Ottoman style, the reflection of centuries of musical culture. He is the only Turkish musician of his generation to have been taught directly by his father in the art of Ottoman classical music, in the old oral tradition of transmission from master to pupil. His attendance at meetings of Sufi fraternities, has enabled him to follow their spiritual and musical teaching. Amongst his many activities, he was a permanent member of Istanbul Radio Orchestra.

In 1975 he went to live in Paris, where he successfully completed his studies in architecture and musicology. He has given numerous concerts in the USA and in Europe, bringing Ottoman classical music and Sufi music from Istanbul to the attention of Western audiences.

His research into Indian, Pakistani and Turkish music has led to his recording some rare, authentic musical genres, later released on record in Europe, whilst in Turkey he’s founded special ensembles to play the styles of music virtually forgotten since the move towards modernisation swept the country. He has written the hagiography of a 13th century Sufi master, Haji Bektash Veli, as well as a book of tales and parables based on the highly important work of Jalaluddin Rumi, and in yet another of his books, an autobiographical work, he’s written an unusual testimony about the conflicts arising from the clash of old, traditional cultures, especially that of Sufism, with modernity. His large discography of CDs released in Europe, the United States, Japan and Turkey offers a true panorama of his authentic style coupled with his genuine creativity, whilst offering real insight into the different facets of Ottoman music. 

He has worked with many major European artists from different disciplines, including Peter Brook, Carolyn Carlson, Maurice Béjart, Peter Gabriel, Georges Aperghis, Didier Lockwood, Michel Portal, Marc Minkowski, Fazil Say, Christoph Lauer, Michel Gorad, Renaud Garcia-Fons… 

Available album : The Ottoman Heritage