As a duo, Çiğdem Aslan and Tahir Palalı are focused on Alevi songs from Anatolia- mostly songs of love and mysticism from 14th-21st century.

The Alevi path as a belief system is an ancient way of testifying that has been passed on through oral traditions in all of the languages with which Alevis have become acquainted. Oral tradition is directly relevant to the ethnic identity of Alevis. An important source of Alevi beliefs and thoughts are the mystical poems and musical ballads (deyisler, nefesler) that have been passed down from generation to generation, many of which have not been recorded in writing.

This belief is based on love and respect for all people, attitudes, knowledge, sharing and science. Alevis believe that one must respect and have knowledge of nature. The principles of love, tolerance and humanism are significant to Alevi philosophy.

Tahir Palalı spent his early childhood in Nurhak and Elbistan (Turkey), where he was influenced musically by the local Alevi minstrels (aşık) and dedes (elder figures) which eventually helped him develop a unique yet authentic music style. Çiğdem Aslan is an Istanbul-born singer who sings in many languages and regional styles. Her musical journey started within the family. Coming from the Kurdish Alevi background, in which music is one of the pivotal elements of the culture, she grew up with the rich sounds of her culture and then gradually met with the other sounds of Istanbul and beyond.

In this concert the duo will be joined by two special guest artists:

Gülseven Medar, a versatile vocal artist hailing from Turkey, stands as a beacon of Anatolian and Mesopotamian musical traditions. Graduating from Istanbul Technical University Turkish Music State Conservatory with distinction, Medar has honed her craft under the tutelage of renowned mentors. With a repertoire spanning Kurdish, Turkish, Zazaki, Armenian, Arabic, and Hebrew folk songs, she has captivated audiences worldwide.

Ali Tekbaş born in Iraq in 1981, migrated to Turkey with his family and immersed himself in the rich musical heritage of his Hakkari roots. With a background in both performance and academic instruction at institutions like Diyarbakır City Conservatory, Tekbas is celebrated for his expertise in various forms of Hakkari music and his collaborations with esteemed artists. From his early involvement in ethnographic fieldwork,Tekbas has been instrumental in both scholarly research and live performances, ensuring the continued vitality of Kurdish musical traditions.

Doors open 7pm. Music starts 8.30pm. The venue is mixed seated and standing. Tables are limited, and available on a first come first served basis, so if you’d like a seat, we recommend arriving early!