Access to the full text of the entire article is only available to members of institutions that have purchased access. If you belong to such an institution, please log in or find out more about how to order.


Modernist Music in Turkey (1923--) By Gedik, Ali Cenk

DOI: 10.4324/9781135000356-REM583-1
Published: 09/05/2016
Retrieved: 17 March 2018, from


Modernist music in Turkey owes its foundations to the late bourgeoisie revolution in 1923. The young republic, motivated by the building of a modern nation-state, rejected the traditional Ottoman music and sought to synthesize Turkish folk music and Western classical music through what is known as the “Music Revolution.” The first generation of modern composers, Cemal Reşit Rey (1904–1972), Hasan Ferid Alnar (1906–1978), Ulvi Cemal Erkin (1906–1972), Ahmet Adnan Saygun (1907–1991), and Necil Kazım Akses (1908–1999) were called the “Turkish Five.” These talented musicians attended European conservatories in Paris, Berlin, Vienna, Budapest, and Prague. A second generation of composers, including Bülent Arel (1919–1990), İlhan Usmanbaş (1921–), and İlhan Mimaroğlu (1926–2012) followed a different path by appreciating recent trends in modernist music, ranging from serial to electronic music. While a similar trend continued within the next generations of composers, each generation also appreciated the traditional Ottoman and Turkish folk music. However, the “Music Revolution” ultimately failed due to the musical policies of right-wing governments.

content locked



Article DOI



Related Searches

Citing this article:

Gedik, Ali Cenk. "Modernist Music in Turkey (1923--)." The Routledge Encyclopedia of Modernism. : Taylor and Francis, 2016. Date Accessed 17 Mar. 2018 doi:10.4324/9781135000356-REM583-1

Copyright © 2016-2018 Routledge.