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East Meets West: Music in Istanbul, c. 1500-1800
“You can’t build a wall around music!” Six expert performers from Dünya, an adventurous early-music ensemble, will transport us to Istanbul in the 16th to 18th centuries, where currents from the East and West met and mingled. Unexpected encounters are portrayed, drawn from a wide array of materials: European travelers' accounts; the unique manuscript of a 17th-century Polish convert to Islam (a sultan's music director); popular,
courtly, and religious music from East and West; and Ottoman music copied by Europeans. The performers sing and play an astonishing number of remarkable instruments, some lovingly recreated on the basis on miniature paintings from a lost world. They include the exotic Ottoman harp and the Turkish forerunner of
the lute, as well as winds, brass, voices, viola da gamba, and percussion. “Dünya” means "World" in several
languages. Joint us for a glimpse of the colorful world of old Istanbul! Reception follows.
More About The Salem Athenaeum
The Salem Athenaeum is a library and historical society, originally founded more than 200 years ago by wealthy patrons. It serves as a library and museum. The library hosts events and is open to the public.