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Fazıl Say and the Classical Music Stage as Informal Learning Space

Second, revised edition


Aylin Buran

Fazıl Say and the Classical Music Stage as Informal Learning Space is an exploration of the classical music stage within a framework of informal learning through the interactive concert performances of Fazıl Say. It delves into the artist’s conceptualization of the music-audience nexus along with his motivation for adopting an interactive manner that emerges through a verbal interaction between performer and listener during the concert performances. Using specific concert performances given in Malatya in Turkey, this book presents a detailed demonstration of such a space as a learning medium; and interprets its pedagogical meaning from both the artist’s and the audience’s perspectives.


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The way the performers present music to the audience is a crucial point in providing the connection between the listener and the performer. In that regard, the way Fazil Say, the Turkish pianist and composer, presents his music de­ serves special attention. He performs some of his concerts in order to make classical music known to people (mainly those in Turkey) who, for various reasons, are less exposed to it, and in places where classical music is not a common activity. In those concerts, Say converses with his audience, gives them basic information regarding the pieces he would be playing, along with technical information and other points of interest about the composers and performers. His way of establishing verbal communication varies according to the audience. In student concerts, he talks with the audience and discusses the music with them in the middle or at the end of the concerts, whereas in public concerts, he makes improvisations in the light of the themes received from the audience. Therefore, along with his performer and composer identity, Say is also known as an artist whose concern is to bring music and audience together in Turkey. The following media comment seems to point to his standing. Hizlan (2003) states: Apart from the fact that he is a musician, Fazil Say undertakes a mission as well. He has never adopted a self-centered philosophy which embodies the belief that the ones who want should listen or only the ones who have enough money can listen. He...

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