12th World Symposium on Choral Music

Burak Onur Erdem


Country: Turkey

This presentation will provide both theoretical and interactive exploration into microtonal singing and its ability to change the universe we are creating through the choral artform.

Combinations of microtonal intervals, called makam in Turkish, are traditionally built on combinations tetrachords and pentachords, and more than 500 scales in total allow expression of much finer musical nuances. Microtones provide choirs with a rich canvas and at the dawn of the 21st century, it’s time to come to a microtonal consensus.

Burak Onur Erdem is the artistic director of Turkish State Choir.

Erdem founded Rezonans in 2010 and performed hundreds of concerts with the ensemble. He founded Choral Culture Association to initiate international projects in Turkey. He has been elected as a board member European Choral Association and assigned to its music commission. He has been appointed to the board of International Federation of Choral Music as the European representative. He has won the ‘Young Conductor Award’ in 38th Varna International Choral Competition and served as a jury member in 66th Arezzo International Choral Competition. 

He studied music theory and conducting in Istanbul Technical University Center for Advanced Studies in Music. He worked on form and music theory with Dr. Michael Ellison, advanced harmony with Dr. Adam Roberts, early music with Dr. Paul Whitehead, and singing with Lynn Trepel Çağlar. He had the chance to work with renowned conductors like Prof. Johannes Prinz, Prof. Maria Guinand, Prof. Anders Eby, Prof. Volker Hempfling, Denes Szabo and Michael Gohl in international masterclasses. He is still pursuing his post-graduate studies under Kunstuniversität Graz with Prof. Johannes Prinz.

Prior to his music education, he has been graduated from Political Science & International Relations departmen in Boğaziçi University with the Rector’s Prize. As a student in the German Highschool Istanbul he has won awards in Athens, Cairo, Rome and Nurnberg in Jugend Musiziert competitions.

He has performed in Portugal, France, Italy, Ireland, Netherlands, Germany, Austria, Hungary, Estonia, Greece and Bulgaria with many choirs. He has premiered works of Giovanni Bonato, Eurico Carrapatoso and Hasan Uçarsu.

About WSCM