Divan der Kontinente Orchestra at Heimathafen

Korhan Erel will be playing in the Divan der Kontinente orchestra on April 15 and 16 at Heimathafen. Divan is a multicultural and multinational contemporary music orchestra with musicians who come from classical, folk, jazz and experimental backgrounds. It plays pieces and improvisations, and the line between the two are usually blurred. The orchestra is led by composer/singer Cymin Samawatie and composer/drummer Ketan Bhatti.

The orchestra will perform with the following musicians on April 15 and 16:

Cymin Samawatie – voice
Liz Allbee – trumpet
Martin Stegner – viola
Korhan Erel – electronics
Susanne Fröhlich – bass recorder
Anıl Eraslan – cello
Mohamad Fityan – kawal and nay
Hilary Jeffery – trombone
Mahan Mirarab – oud and guitar
Niko Meinhold – piano
Naoko Kikuchi – koto
Taiko Saito – vibraphone and marimbaphone
Milian Vogel – bass clarinet and electronics
Bassem Alkhouri – kanun
Ralf Schwarz – double bass
Ketan Bhatti – drums

Here are some useful links:



TICKETS: https://www.reservix.de/tickets-modara-divan-der-kontinente-in-berlin-heimathafen-neukoelln-saal-am-15-4-2018/e1182917

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Two new albums, concerts in Munich

SET2_webIn July 2016, Korhan was invited by reeds player Udo Schindler to play in his Arch Musica series in Munich. The first concert was with the trio with trombonist Sebi Tramontana, while the second one was a duo with Udo in the Salon für Klang&Kunst series. Both concerts were recorded and have been recently released as two albums. The trio concert with Schindler/Erel/Tramontana was released on FMR Records under the name Sound Energy Transformation – 10 bagatelles for electronic & winds”, and the duo was released under the name leben|nebel on Creative Sources.

These two albums will be officially launched with concerts in Munich. The S.E.T. Trio will play at Koesk München on February 8. The duo concert will take place at the Salon for Klang&Kunst on February 9 (please contact me for the address).


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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)

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Sound performance at Zilberman Gallery

8rz7-memed-web-upcomingOn the occasion of Memed Erdener’s exhibition BEAUTY OF BIGOTRY and his residency at Zilberman Gallery–Berlin, Korhan will be playing a sound performance at the closing event, where there will also be a exhibition tour and a conversation between curator and art critic Eva Scharrer, writer and performance artist Göksu Kunak and artist Memed Erdener. The event will start at 18:00 and end with an open studio with Memed Erdener around 21:00.

Zilberman Gallery was founded in Istanbul in 2008. Its aim is twofold: to promote contemporary artists from Turkey internationally and to introduce international artists to the local art scene. Zilberman Gallery stages 10-12 exhibitions in a year at its main gallery space and project space. The gallery occupies two separate floors of Mısır Apartment, one of the most famous examples of art nouveau architecture in Istanbul, designed in 1910 by Ottoman Armenian architect Hovsep Aznavur.

In 2016, Zilberman Gallery opened its new Berlin space contains both a gallery and an artist-in-residency program. Zilberman Gallery Berlin is located in a turn-of-the-century building in Berlin’s Charlottenburg neighborhood. Originally home to one of the first galleries for modern art, more than a hundred years ago, it is today again home to some of the most exciting contemporary art galleries in Berlin.



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Concerts in December

Korhan Erel will have relatively less concerts in December compared to November, but will nevertheless play some really exciting ones.

The first two concerts in December are with guitarist Eric Wong. Eric and Korhan had played several times in 2016 in Berlin and Cologne, and had organized/curated the UnStumm Hong Kong event together with Nicola Hein in November 2016. Eric and Korhan will play their first concert on December 3 with trumpet player Brad Henkel in the Noiseberg concert series at Atelier Äuglein. The concert will start at 17.00 and there will be many more acts in the lineup. The second concert, this time in duo, will be in the Experimontag series at Madame Claude the following day, December 4.

On December 5, Korhan will play in the Urban Acoustic Tribe series curated by Bettina Wackernagel and supported by initiative neue musik berlin e.V. Korhan will first play his solo piece “Mahreç” and then play in duo with Cymin Samawatie (voice, percussion), where they will improvise along poetry from Iran, Turkey and elsewhere. The other two performers in the program are Erik Drescher (flute) and Alexandre Babel (percussion). They will play pieces from various composers including Alvin Lucier, James Tenney, Chiyoko Szlavnics, Mio Chareteau and John Cage. Please visit this link for more information on the concert.

On December 6, Korhan will play as Ayşegül her live techno act at IPA Bar in the Freaksdorf series curated by Regis Lemberthe, where she will mix beats, ambient sounds, field recordings and dubby sounds in one pot of music for an hour. The other acts of the evening are Kakaliagou / Tödtloff Duo and Otolitos. -> Facebook Event

On December 9, Cymin Samawatie (voice) invites five musicians to her Music Lounge series at Galerie Kremers: Liz Allbee (trumpet), Taiko Saito (vibraphone), Korhan Erel (live sound processing), Uygur Vural (cello), Ralf Schwarz (double bass). This concert will also serve as an open rehearsal for the concert in Baku on December 13

On December 13 and 14, Korhan Erel will play two concerts in the Silk Road Festival in Baku. The first concert on the 13th will be with the small acoustic improvising ensemble Divan Acoustic, where Korhan will process the music live while walking among the players. The concert on the 14th will be in the Divan der Kontinente Orchestra led by Cymin Samawatie.

“Divan Acoustic” is Cymin Samawatie (voice), Liz Allbee (trumpet), Taika Saito (vibraphone), Uygur Vural (cello), Ralf Schwarz (double bass), Korhan Erel (live sound processing)

“Divan der Kontinente” is Cymin Samawatie (voice), Ralf Schwarz (double bass), Milian Vogel (bass clarinet), Tilmann Dehnhard( flutes), Hilary Jeffery (trombone), Mohamad Fityan (nay, kawala), Liz Allbee (trumpet), Korhan Erel (electronics), Taiko Saito (marimbaphone), Niko Meinhold (guzheng, piano), Mona Matbou Riahi (clarinet), Uygur Vural (cello), Florian Keupp (sound engineer)

The last concert of 2017 will be with the Gießen Improvisers Pool on December 16 with Peter Geisselbrecht (piano), Frank Rühl (guitar), Georg Wolf (double bass), Nils Hartwig (clarinet), Michael Griener (drums), Korhan Erel (electronics) at Georg-Büchner-Saal/Alte UB, Gießen.

Korhan will have only one concert in January, again at Madame Claude, this time playing with cellist Anıl Eraslan on January 8.






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Concerts in November

20170430-_KWA8186Korhan is going to play concerts in November that feature a diverse spectrum of genres.

In the first concert of the month, Korhan is going to play in an improvising orchestra conducted by pianist/drummer/composer Tyshawn Sorey in the JazzFest Berlin on November 5. The orchestra features western and eastern instruments and two electronics players: Adam Pultz Melbye, double bass / Alex Nowitz, voice / Alireza Mehdizadeh, kamancheh / Anaïs Tuerlinckx, piano / Anke Lucks, trombone / Biliana Voutchkova, violin / Colin Hacklander, drums, percussion / Els Vandeweyer, vibraphone, percussion / Farahnaz Hatam electronics / Grégoire Simon, viola / Hannes Lingens, accordion / Julia Reidy, guitars / Kathrin Pechlof, harp / Korhan Erel, electronics / Niko Meinhold , guzheng / Nikolaus Neuser , trumpet / Orlando De Boeykens , tuba / Ravi Srinivasan, table, ghatam, percussion / Uli Kempendorff, saxophone, clarinet / Ulrike Brand, cello

The second concert will be on November 6 at Neu West Berlin with Mia Dyberg (saxophone), Axel Dörner (trumpet) and Joel Grip (bass). It will be Korhan’s first-ever performance with Mia and Joel.

The third concert will be at REH on November 8 with the trio VollMund, where Korhan plays and talks about food with Edith Steyer (reeds) and Adrian Krok (drums). Edith, Adrian and Korhan have been rehearsing for developing musican and thematic ideas, and have arrived at a common dynamic musical language that also includes stories about food and eating that are made up on the spot.

The fourth concert will be a private event where Korhan will improvise with Hüseyin Evirgen (piano). Please send an email if you’d like to be at this concert on November 9.


On November 15, Korhan is going to improvise with voice improvisor and sound artist Rahel Kraft at Z-Bar as an opening act for pianist/composer Mikkel Almholt’s rather unique project Ghost, Flute & Dice. Rahel uses electronics and sensors attached to her arms to manipulate her voice. Please lend an ear to Harscht!, a recording by Rahel and Korhan. that was featured on the compliation Utterances by Linear Obsessional.

A first-ever concert at the jazz club Aufsturz on November 17 will be with reeds player Florian Walter and drummer Simon Camatta. Florian and Korhan have musically met recently and have played a concert in Essen last month. Simon and Korhan had played for the first and last time during Korhan’s Sound Trips NRW tour in November 2012.

Golden Dark (Elo Masing, David Hull)

Korhan is going to play drum machine on some tunes on November 18 with the GoldenDark, an experimental rock-pop duo with Elo Masing on violin, looper and David Hull on guitar,  effects and vocals. The concert is at Watt Bar in Prenzlauer Berg.

November 19 is a reunion with cellist Hannah Marshall and flautist Sabine Vogel at Spektrum. Korhan met Hannah at the HumaNoise Congress #28 in Wiesbaden in 2016, where they played improvised music for three days with eight other musicians, which resulted in the album Tutti released on Creative Sources. Korhan and Sabine have already played twice in Berlin and have been rehearsing on developing ideas. Hannah and Sabine have also played several times in the past. A re-union and re-visit of new and old musical intimacies.

17_2_K-Doerner-Erel-Megroz-WegmannOn November 26, Korhan returns to exploratorium after 2 years. He will play with the Judith Wegmann quartet featuring Judith Wegmann on prepared piano, Axel Dörner on trumpet, Julien Megroz on percussion and Korhan on electronics. The quartet had to take a hiatus after playing several concerts in Berlin and Biel in 2015.

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Summer activities, concerts in the Fall

It was a relatively calm summer for Korhan in terms of performances, where most time was spent on rehearsing/playing sessions with new collaboration partners as well as researching and experimenting to develop the new laptop-less performance and composition setup.

In the period June-August, Korhan played some very exciting concerts in festivals and venues in Moers, Vienna and Berlin. The first one was a concert in the Moers Festival with Islak Köpek, Korhan’s free improvisation ensemble in Istanbul. Even though the ensemble has been in hiatus for many years, it was only then it started playing occasional concerts in European Festivals. The previous concert was in 2015 in the New Sounds of Istanbul in Berlin Festival.

The second exciting event was Korhan’s debut as a techno artist under the moniker Ayşegül Plays…. Ayşegül is the name of a fictitious character in a series of children’s books in Turkey where a pretty, well-dressed, well-mannered, very feminine girl called Ayşegül has several adventures. This series is adapted from the Belgian original Martine, created by the Belgian duo Gilbert Delahaye & Marcel Marlier. Korhan played a one-hour live set at Berlin’s Suicide Circus featuring a very simple setup. Despite being his first-ever live set, it was received well.

Korhan organized two evenings at Berlin’s Sowieso where he brought together improvisers from the Turkish scene based in Europe with musicians from the Berlin scene. Despite the heavy rain on the second day (June 29), the music and the vibe was great.

In July, Korhan started a spoken-word/song project with Paris-based singer/writer Lembe Lokk. Lembe and Korhan had met through David Rothenberg, with whom Korhan has been performing their Berlin Bülbül concerts with live nightingales in Berlin since 2014. One week after this performance was a fantastic night of improvisation with Turkish and Iranian musicians (Cymin Samawatie, Golnar Shahyar, Mona Matbou Riahi, Uygur Vural and Korhan Erel) in Vienna. These musicians had met in Berlin at the Female Voice of Iran Festival in March 2017.

July came to an end with a comprehensive participation in the #displaced #rePlaced Festival curated by Ipek Ipekoğlu at Radialsystem. Korhan performed with Cymin Samawatie, spoke at a panel lead by Çağla İlk and with Sakina Teyman, Pınar Selek and Maximillian Popp, and conducted a workshop on music-making on mobile platforms.

In August, Korhan revived the project “is paradise cheaper?” with writer Göksu Kunak. Göksu and Korhan had developed this lecture-sound performance in 2015 based on the same-titled text by Göksu Kunak. They performed it in the wonderful Fuchsbau Festival in Lehrte. The attendance and vibe was wonderful. Fuchsbau is a multi-disciplinary festival with music, art, panels, presentations, installations that takes place in a squatted old brick factory amidst corn fields in Lehrte. Besides, Korhan also performed their first performance with violist Maria Takahashi, with whom Korhan has been rehearsing in the past several months. Another concert was one with sewing agent Lisa Simpson at her atelier in Berlin, where Korhan played a very limited/small electronic setup along with Lisa’s sewing machine performance.

Korhan has two concerts with the Istanbul Composers Orchestra led by pianist/composer Laia Genc in Hannover on September 8 and October 26. In October, Korhan will also tour with two of his favorite electronic musicians, Achim Zepezauer and Jim Campbell. The tour comprises of performances in Düsseldorf, Hamburg, Bremen and Berlin, with possible appearances in Leipzig and/or Dresden. Touring starts in Düsseldorf on Oct 3 and ends in Berlin with a concert at Spektrum on Oct 8. Korhan will also play with Vollmund (Edith Steyer, Adrian David Krok) at West Germany on October 27.

November has several exciting shows, the first of which will be playing in an improvising orchestra in the JazzFest Berlin on November 5 conducted by drummer/pianist/composer Tyshawn Sorey. On November 15, Korhan will play in duo with voice/electronics improviser Rahel Kraft at Z Bar. On November 19 will be a trio concert with cellist Hannah Marshall and flautist Sabine Vogel at Spektrum. Both venues are in Berlin.

Korhan will play two concerts with guitarist Eric Wong in December. The first one will be in the Noiseberg concert series at Atelier Auglein on Dec 3. The second one will be on the next day on Dec 4 in the Experimontag series at Madame Claude, this time as a trio with trumpet player extraordinaire Brad Henkel.

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Concerts in Berlin in May

Korhan Erel performing with Cyminology at Emmauskirche

Korhan Erel performing with Cyminology at Emmauskirche © Andre Symann/Sieben48

Korhan Erel will present some of his recent collaborations with Berlin-based improvisers in Spektrum and Officina Neukölln in May, as well as performing in a re-run of the Hide&Seek shows in the Jewish Museum. On May 30, he’ll be part of the immersive multi-disciplinary improv performance “The First Breath” at New West Berlin

On May 17, Korhan will perform one set with Lan Cao and Gregor Siedl, and one set with Sabine Vogel at Spektrum Berlin. Lan, Gregor and Korhan have been rehearsing on and off in the last two years. Sabine and Korhan have played together for the first time in 2017. The show will start at 20:00.  Click link for more information on Spektrum’s webpage.

On May 19, Korhan will play a set with reed player Edith Steyer. Edith and Korhan have been rehearsing in trio with drummer Adrian Krok for some time, and will present some of the results of this collaboration, alas without Adrian, who has other commitments. The show will be a part of the Raze Ramparts series curated by guitarist Julia Reidy.

The Hide&Seek shows will be on May 12-13-14 at the Jewish Museum. The 12th is already sold out, but there may be tickets left for the other two days.

On May 30, Korhan Erel will be part of a large ensemble of musicians based in Berlin and Brooklyn at New West Berlin for an immersive improv performance called “The First Breath”, conceptualized by Liz Kosack and Patrick Breiner. The cast of characters will be Patrick Breiner (tenor sax/clarinet), Jamie Agnello (performer/puppeteer), Liz Kosack (synth/ masks), Liz Allbee (trumpet), Korhan “Liz” Erel (electronics), Steve Heather (percussion), Dan Peter Sundland (electric bass), Yoshiko Klein (bass recorder), Julia Reidy (guitar), Brad Henkel (trumpet), Julian Elvira (subcontrabass flute)

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Empire plays in Amsterdam, Moers and Duisburg


Empire in Platzhirsch Festival

Empire in Platzhirsch Festival 2016


Empire is an improvisation trio that came into existence when guitarist Thorsten Töpp invited trumpet player Liz Allbee and electronics player Korhan Erel to play two concerts with him in the Platzhirsch Festival in Duisburg in 2016. The trio returns with three concerts in Amsterdam, Moers and Duisburg.

The Amsterdam concert ‘Genres are so 2016’ on April 25 will take place at Splendor, where the trio will share the bill with Jerboah, an ensemble that plays “a mix of art-rock, post-pop, and worldbeat”.

This year’s Moers Festival artist-in-residence trumpet player John-Dennis Renken invites Empire for a concert at the Schlosstheater Studio in Moers on April 26. Empire will return the favor by inviting Renken to play with them at Lokal Harmonie in Duisburg on April 27. Both concerts will feature Natascha Töpp’s films.

Empire is:
Thorsten Töpp | electric guitar, electronics
Liz Allbee | amplified trumpet
Korhan Erel | computerbased live-electronics

John-Dennis Renken | trumpet, live-electronics
Natascha Töpp | video

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Female Voice of Iran, schimmernd in March

Korhan Erel will play some very exciting concerts in Berlin and various towns in Switzerland in two projects.

The first series of concerts will be in the framework of “Female Voice of Iran” festival which is organized by Zeitgenössische Oper Berlin. The festival will take place on March 16-19. The main venue for concerts is Villa Elisabeth, with other concerts taking place at the Berlin Philharmonic and Galerie Kremers. Korhan Erel will be playing three concerts in the festival. The first one will be a lunch concert at the Berlin Philharmonic on March 14 with an amazing lineup of Iranian and German musicians: Martin Stegner (viola), Haleh Seyfiyadeh (vocals), Cymin Samawatie(vocals), Yalda Yazdani (tar), Sasan Samadi (kamancheh), Reza Zalpour (ney), Mahan Mirarab (guitar), Ralf Schwarz (double bass), and Faride Sarangi (tombak). The second and third concerts will be on March 19 at Villa Elisabeth: a matinee concert of improvised music at 11:00 and with the Female Voice of Iran Orchestra at 19:00.

“schimmernd” is a dance-music project that was initiated in 2015 in Switzerland by Angela Stöcklin (dance), Jan Schacher (double bass, electronics) and Beat Unternährer (trombone), and two participants from Berlin, Akemi Nagao (dance) and Korhan Erel (electronics). The ensemble performed two shows in Switzerland and then took a long hiatus, only to return with a five-concert strong tour in Switzerland in March 2017 with the following dates:

March 25 / Plattform – wir bieten Raum, Gotthelfstrasse 29, 3013 Bern
March 26 / Probebühne Zirkus Chnopf, Flurstrasse 85, Zürich
March 27 / Atelier der ORT (AKKU), Emmenbrücke/Luzern
March 28 / FIM Basel , Alte Rumfabrik, Güterstrasse 145, Basel
March 29 / with guest Ségiu Voser (cello and voice) at WIM, Gewürzmühle, Zug




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