Two Duos: Lotz/Erel and Babikyan/Erel


Korhan Erel (sleeping) and Mark Alban Lotz (staying cool) on a subway train in Istanbul

On February 1st, Korhan’s long-time duo with flutist Mark Alban Lotz will resurface at Berlin’s WATT Bar in Prenzlauerberg. The two musicians have met in 2010 and have played in duo as well as playing and recording with Korhan’s Istanbul ensemble Islak Köpek since then in Turkey, the Netherlands and Germany.  The album “Istanbul Improv Sessions May 4th” was recorded in Istanbul in 2010 and was released on Evil Rabbit Records in 2011, with an album launch concert at Borusan Music House in Istanbul.

Another duo, this time with dancer Lerna Babikyan, will resume its activities in the soundance sessions curated by Jenny Haack at Dock 11 as a prequel to soundance festival in June 2018. Lerna and Korhan will present their structured improvisation “in-spheres” on Februrary 4 at Dock 11. The whole event will start on Feb 1 and go until Sunday, February 4 with a rich, diverse program of dance and music encounters. Lerna and Korhan will also perform at the actual festival in Summer 2018.

Lerna and Korhan have met in their native Istanbul in 2009 and collaborated on several projects over the course of the years. They were re-united when Lerna relocated to Berlin.


Lerna Babikyan and Korhan Erel (photo by Peter Tümmers)

About Korhan Erel

Korhan Erel is a computer musician, improviser, sound designer based in Berlin. He plays instruments he designs on a computer by employing various controllers. He also uses analog and digital electronics. He is a founding member of Islak Köpek, Turkey’s pioneer free improvisation group, which is regarded as the band that started the free improvisation scene in Turkey. He composes and designs sounds for dance, theater, installations and film. He collaborates with dancers, video artists and spoken word artists. Korhan’s collaboration with Sydney-based video artist Fabian Astore “The Threshold” has won the Blake Prize in Australia in 2012. Korhan’s computer performance system is called Omnibus. The instruments within Omnibus are a culmination of Korhan’s musical past and aesthetic choices. Omnibus instruments use concrete sounds (samples, field recordings), morphed and processed in realtime. They can be as simple as one single sample being played using a Nintendo Wii controller to a complex system that employs granular synthesis and spectral processing. The instruments are played interactively using Nintendo Wii controllers (Korhan’s choice of controller when he plays in ensembles with acoustic/electric instrument players), an iPad (used in solo/duo performances as well as ensemble concerts) and several midi controllers. No matter what technology he uses, Korhan always stays focused on the outcome and musicality rather than processes. Korhan is the co-curator (with Nicola Hein) of UnStumm, a project that brings video artists and musicians from Germany and one other country for audiovisual improvised collaboration. Korhan has had three residencies at STEIM (Center for research & development of instruments & tools for performers) in Amsterdam, where he studied use of sensors in music performance and instrument design. He was a guest composer at the Electronic Music Studios in Stockholm in January 2011. Korhan has seven CD releases on Gruenrekorder (Germany), Creative Sources Records (Portugal), Evil Rabbit Records (Netherlands/Germany), A.K. Müzik (Turkey) and Kukuruku Recordings (Greece) as well as several netlabel releases. He performs regularly in Europe and in the Middle East as a solo artist as well as with his projects in Germany and Holland.
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