UnStumm in Hong Kong and Singapore

UnStumm is Korhan Erel’s intercultural collaborative audiovisual project he developed with Nicola Hein. The project was premiered with the support of Akademie der Künste der Welt in 2015 in Cologne between artists from Germany and Turkey. Nicola and Korhan are now taking UnStumm to Hong Kong and Singapore. The Hong Kong leg will be between November 2-5 and the Singapore leg between November 7-10.

UnStumm Hong Kong is a joint effort in collaboration with Eric Wong, musician and composer based in Berlin and Hong Kong. UnStumm Hong Kong is kindly sponsored by the Hong Kong Arts Development Council, the Hong Kong New Music Ensemble, and Goethe Institut.

The rehearsals and performances will be at the facilities of the Hong Kong New Music Ensemble. Two teams, each consisting of two musicians and two visual artists from Hong Kong and Germany, will be rehearsing for three days and then will present their work on November 5.

UnStumm Hong Kong teams are:

Vvzela Kook – Video Art
Chin King – Guzheng
Sven Hahne – Video Art
Korhan Erel – Computer, controllers, electronics

Eric Wong – Guitar
Crystal Bug (Yau Wan Kei) – Video Art
Claudia Schmitz – Video Art
Nicola Hein – Guitar

UnStumm Singapore is organized with the support and collaboration of LASALLE College of the Arts. This UnStumm will be somewhat different than UnStumm’s usual format. There, the artists from Germany will be a part of a larger project called the Irish Circus. It will take place in the The Singapore Airlines Theatre of LASALLE.

The Irish Circus is a project that is based on the score for “____,____ ____ circus on ____,” by the experimental composer John Cage, which sets up a strict formula on how to translate any book into a performance. UnStumm’s German artists will join LASALLE’s very own lecturers Dr Timothy O’Dwyer and Brian O’Reilly, and the students of the Electronic Music Studies department of LASALLE as well as the German visual artist Lillevan to create an experimental audiovisual extravaganza on November 10 in the LASALLE.

This will be Korhan’s second event about John Cage after the centennial concert he co-produced in Istanbul at the end of 2012.



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Concerts in September

Korhan Erel playing Omnibus - computer instrument in Cologne, photo by Peter Tümmers (B&W)Korhan Erel will play many concerts in several German cities in September. The first twoconcerts will be in the Platzhirsch Festival in Duisburg on September 3 and 4 with the core trio Empire of Thorsten Töpp, Liz Allbee and Korhan Erel plus guest artists.

Korhan will play a duo with video artist Akiko Nakayama at the Geoff Stern Art Space in Berlin on September 7.

Next stop will be Hamburg with Korhan’s long-time collaborator Gunnar Lettow in Gunnar’s Frequenzgänge concert series. Lettow Erel Duo is celebrating its fifth year by playing with the legendary Tim Hodgkinson on September 9.

On September 13, Korhan will play a trio with flutist Angelika Sheridan and guitarist Eric Wong in the Plattform Nicht Dokumentierbarer Ereignisse concert series in Cologne. Angelika Sheridan was Korhan’s musical partner in UnStumm Cologne in September 2015, and Eric will be their partner in UnStumm Hong Kong in November 2016.


Cologne-based pianist and composer Laia Genc and Korhan Erel have been collaborating on numerous occasions and projects since 2015. Their duo Serene has already played two concerts in Cologne and Korhan is a member of Istanbul Composers Orchestra (ICO), which was founded by Laia and a group of composers/musicians based in Istanbul. ICO has played three concerts in 2015 and 2016 in Cologne, Istanbul, and Berlin. On September 17, Korhan will join Laia’s jazz trio Liaison Tonique with Markus Braun on double bass and Jens Düppe on drums in the Euskirchener Kulturnacht at Park Hotel in Euskirchen.

The-Liz-1-von-1-1024x683 spotbehindThe Liz has caused quite a stir with their project “Book of Birds” at Quiet Cue in Berlin and in the moers festival in Moers in 2016. They will play their second performance of “Book of Birds” in Berlin in the Urban Acoustic Tribes on September 23 at ACUD Studio. In the same event, Korhan will play their quadraphonic solo piece “üçgen-dörtgen” on September 24 at Villa Elisabeth. Korhan had premiered this piece in the Museum of Applied Arts/Contemporary Art Vienna (MAK Wien) in April 2013, and also performed it in the Quiet Cue @ KINDL event in September 2015 in Berlin.

The last concert in September will be with the duo with singer/composer Cymin Samawatie. They will perform poetry from Iran and Turkey in a voice-electronics setting at the Werkstatt der Kulturen in Berlin on September 30. The duo had played for the first time at Radialsystem in February 2016 as a part of Sasha Waltz’s event Zuhören: Continu by Sascha Waltz and Friends. Korhan is also one of the guest musicians in the ECM-band Cyminology with one concert in Munich in April 2016 and one upcoming concert in Istanbul in January 2017.Cymin Samawatie and Korhan Erel

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Concerts in Wiesbaden, Frankfurt, Berlin, Munich, Krailling

Korhan Erel, Omnibus computer instrument, photo by Peter TümmersKorhan Erel is going to be playing some very exciting festivals and concerts in many cities across Germany in July.

First one is the Humanoise Congress #28 in Wiesbaden on July 1-3, where Korhan is going to camp out with an amazing line up of improvisers from all over Europe: Elena Margarita Kakaliagou (french horn), Jonas Kocher (accordion), Dirk Marwedel (extended saxophone), Hannah Marshall (cello), Theo Nabicht (contrabass clarinet), Ulrich Phillipp (double bass), Ernesto Rodrigues (viola), Wolfgang Schliemann (drums), Nicolas Souchal (trumpet).

Following that, Korhan is going to play with field recording artist and owner of sound art label Gruenrekorder Lasse-Marc Riek at the Institut für Neue Medien in Frankfurt on July 5. Lasse-Marc and Korhan are also members of the Animal Music Quartet alongside Elliott Sharp and David Rothenberg. This concert is organized by Phonophon.

On July 14, Korhan is going to improvise with Liz Allbee (trumpet), Adam Pultz Melbye (double bass) and Emilio Gordoa (vibraphone, objects) at Berlin’s Sowieso, to be followed by a first-ever meeting with Gianpaolo Peres (voice) and Hilary Jeffrey (trombone) for “Pasolini Spiritual” at Weincafe W. in Berlin. On July 16, Korhan will improvise in a duo with friend and cellist Nora Krahl at Gelegenheiten in Berlin. Last performance of July in Berlin will be in the Improvisation XChange Berlin 2016 on July 23 with dancers Jenny Döll & Michael Shapiro, and soprano sax player Manuel Miethe.

Korhan Erel playing Omnibus - computer instrument in Cologne, photo by Peter Tümmers (B&W)Korhan will end the month with two concerts in Krailling and Munich. Both concerts are organized and will be with Udo Schindler (clarinets, saxophones). On July 28, Udo and Korhan will be improvising with  Sebastiano Tramontana (trombone) at Ars Musica, München, and on July 29 as a duo at Salon für KLANG + KUNST, Krailling.




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a garden

“The garden is an intimate space, defined but porous between inside and outside, as well as porous between the organic matter and the synthetic structures.”

The core of this project, which Korhan developed together with Jagna Anderson, is setting of a multi-perspective spatial and sonic structure, which will keep developing, evolving, growing for about 40 minutes.

They are creating an environment of polyrhythmic and cyclical temporality, consisting of pulsating, vibrating, fluid textures, in which “natural” and “artificial” elements are interwoven and sometimes undistinguishable or highly ambivalent and dazzling.

“Nature” and “culture”, analogue and digital, body and machine are paradoxically and intimately matched.

The sounds range from urban recordings to spoken text and pre-made sound collages and short loops. Live manipulation is sparse, but there.

a garden

Korhan Erel – sound
Jagna Anderson – movement

June 11, 20:00
Mime Centrum, Kunstquartier Bethanien
Mariannenplatz 2
Entrance: 10 Euros

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The Liz at moers festival – full concert video

The-Liz-1-von-1-1024x683 spotbehind

Photo by Niclas Weber of SPOTBEHIND at moers festival

The Liz’s “Book of Birds” concert at moers festival was fantastically broadcast and videotaped by ARTE. The video lived on ARTE’s website for six months and has expired mid-November. Now it is available on YouTube. Enjoy!

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Two concerts with Istanbul Composers Orchestra

Istanbul Composer Orchestra’s Berlin concert is on May 7 at Emmauskirche on Lausitzerplatz in Kreuzberg at 18:00.

Korhan Erel

Laia Genc ICO bannerKorhan Erel will be playing two concerts with Laia Genc’s Istanbul Composers Orchestra in Istanbul on April 13 and in Berlin on May 7, both concerts in the program of the XJAZZ Festival. The festival’s program includes a lot of Turkish and Turkish-German acts this year due to their expansion into Turkey this year. There will be concerts in Istanbul, Ankara and Berlin.

The orchestra was founded by Laia Genc during her residency in Istanbul in 2014. It includes original compositions as well as reinterpretation of Kurdish, Turkish and Armenian folk tunes, depending on the line up of singers.

The April 13 Istanbul concert will be at Zorlu Performance Center with the following musicians:

Ceren Oykut: Video
Başak Yavuz: Vocals
Mehmet Akbaş: Vocals
Christian Thome: Drums, Percussion
Baran Say: Double Bass / Electric
Dave Allen: Guitar
Korhan Erel: Computer, Electronics
Laia Genc: Piano
Bassem Hawar: Djoze
Taner Akyol: Baglama…

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The Liz “Book of Birds” Premiere

THE LIZ triple head2

The Liz: Liz Allbee, Liz Erel, Liz Kosack

The Liz was born out of a first-time meeting of Liz Allbee, Liz Kosack and Korhan “Liz” Erel in the Kim Fest on December 3, 2014. What started out as an improvising trio of amplified trumpet, synthesizer and computer turned into a power trio of performance, literature, visuals and stage design.

In her new production, “Book of Birds”, The Liz tells the story of transformations and multiples: a maiden Sphinx, Anubis the dog of death, and Oedipus, as narrated by Kathy Acker.

Drawing from traditional Greek myth, as well as Cocteau’s ‘Infernal Machine’ and Acker’s ‘Blood and Guts in High School’, The Liz translates the riddles of the Sphinx into an engine for the musical re-production of resistance, and of subliminal and mythic resonance.

“Book of Birds” is kindly supported by Initiative Neue Musik Berlin and will premiere at Quiet Cue on April 30, and will take stage at moers festival on May 15.

Liz Allbee – Oedipus / Kathy Acker amplified trumpet, voice, text, video
Liz Kosack – Anubis / synthesizer, voice, masks, puppets, light design
Korhan Liz Erel – Sphinx / computer, electronics, sound design, voice, light design

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David Rothenberg & Korhan Erel: Berlin Bülbül

A nice review of my album with David Rothenberg, “Berlin Bülbül” by Tyran Grillo

between sound and space: ECM Records and Beyond

Berlin Bülbül

David Rothenberg, familiar to ECM listeners through his fascinating duo album with Marilyn Crispell, has constructed one of the most idiosyncratic vessels in which to sail the waters of improvised music. He excels at expanding his own terms to suit an ever-changing roster of natural musicians. The German field recording label Gruenrekorder is the host for this rather different collaboration, which combines Rothenberg’s clarinets with Turkish sound artist Korhan Erel on computer and iPad, along with nightingales fed live from the parks of Berlin. Anyone who has followed Rothenberg’s career will know of his mythical explorations of bird song in the book Why Birds Sing and its accompanying CD. More recently he has done the same with whales and insects, but the birds have been a regular point of return.

The liner notes of Berlin Bülbül (the second word being Turkish for “nightingale”) riff off these birds’ distinct ways of…

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Berlin Bülbül in its third year in Berlin

David Rothenberg and Korhan Erel have been playing live with nightingales in Berlin since 2014. In their third year in the city, which is one of the most important locations for nightingale research in Europe, they will do two outdoor concerts in Hasenheide on April 23 and in Viktoriapark on April 29.

Rothenberg and Erel have recorded this music on the 2015 release from Gruenrekorder/Terra Nova, Berlin Bülbül, and have performed this music together in Berlin and in Istanbul.


Hasenheide, April 23

We will gather at 1130pm at the main entrance to the park at Hasenheide 81, then head into the park to find the most engaged, singing bird to perform a one-hour trio performance with.

David Rothenberg, clarinets
Korhan Erel, iPad, Samplr

Viktoriapark, April 29

We will gather at 1130pm on the night of April 29th at the main entrance to Viktoriapark at Kreuzbergstrasse 10, then head into the park to find the most engaged, singing bird to perform a one-hour trio performance with. This time, they will be joined by a larger selection of fantastic musicians:

David Rothenberg, clarinet
Korhan Erel, iPad, Samplr
Cymin Samawatie, vocals
Ralf Schwarz, bass
Frédéric L’Épée, guitar
Lembe Lokk, vocals
plus special secret guests…

Donations will be accepted.

Cymin Samawatie & Ralf Schwarz – http://www.cyminology.de
Frédéric L’Épée – http://fredericlepee.eu/
Lembe Lokk – www.lembe.net


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Cyminology in Munich

Korhan Erel will be playing his first-ever concert with the amazing Cyminology as one of the guest musicians on April 20 in Allerheiligen-Hofkirche in Munich. The other guest musician is Martin Stegner, violist extraordinaire, who has been playing and recording with Cyminology for a long time.

The concert is almost sold out, so if you are in Munich and want to see this great band, click on this link for tickets.

The ECM band Cyminology combines Persian poetry and chamber-esque contemporary music: East and West, old and new in beautiful synthesis. The subtle yet dynamic, softly-pulsating music takes its cue from the sound of the Persian language presenting poets such as Rumi, Hafis and Khayyam.

Cymin Samawatie’s compositions combine elements from different kinds of music, including chamber jazz, open improvisation, modern composition, impressionism and minimalism.

Cyminology creates a space, in which post-migrant European culture is expressed in music and poetry. It is an adventurous experience to listen and to watch the sensitive interaction within the Berlin based quartet (founded 2002).

Cymin Samawatie, vocals, composition
Benedikt Jahnel, piano, composition
Ralf Schwarz, double bass
Tobias Backhaus, drums


Martin Stegner, viola
Korhan Erel, electronics, sound processing

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