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Queens College Continues "Year of Turkey" Cultural Odyssey This Spring with a Free Contemporary Dance Performance

--Innovative Dancer-Choreographers are Making Their U.S. Debut;
Other Events Through June 2012 Will Explore Turkey Through Its Politics, Society, Economy and Other Arts--

FLUSHING, NY, January 27, 2011–Dedicated to embracing and understanding the complexity and vitality of our increasingly interconnected world, Queens College administrators are focusing each year on examining the history, art and culture of a different country. The program launched in fall 2010 with the Year of China, and continued last fall with the Year of Turkey: Exploring Past, Present, Future. So far events have included lectures and seminars by renowned scholars, as well as exhibitions, art installations, and music and dance performances. Year of Turkey will be followed by Years of India, Brazil and South Africa.

Among the first events for Year of Turkey this spring will be INFLUX, a free contemporary Turkish dance performance on Saturday, February 25 at 8 pm in the Goldstein Theatre.
Mustafa Kaplan and Filiz Sizlani, considered to be two of the most outstanding and innovative choreographers to have emerged from Turkey, will perform Sek Sek—loosely translated as “hopscotch”—which investigates the equilibrium and opposing forces that emerge when bodies interact. Ayşe Orhon, an up-and-coming choreographer, will perform Çok, a meditation on the question, “How many bodies can a body embody?” The dance is narrated through the personal reflections of dancers, choreographers, and visual artists from Istanbul. Orhon physicalizes their voices, gestures, attitudes, and what is verbally inexpressible about them. All three dancer-choreographers will be in temporary residence at Queens College, working with students.

The performance will be followed by a Q&A session moderated by Gurur Ertem, a specialist in contemporary dance culture and the artistic co-director of Bimeras Culture Foundation, which promotes international collaborations in contemporary dance and performance. She is also a founding member of iDANS Festival in Istanbul, the only international transdisciplinary festival encompassing visual and live arts in Turkey.


Other Year of Turkey Events (free unless otherwise indicated):
Wednesday, February 8, 2012
The Prehistory of the Black Sea and the Interaction between
Climate and Humans
by William B. F. Ryan of the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University. Hosted by Cecilia McHugh, QC School of Earth and Environmental Sciences

Campbell Done | 12:15 pm  

Wednesday, February 15, 2012
: on William B. F. Ryan’s February 28 talk led by Cecilia McHugh,
Professor of marine geology and geophysics in QC’s School of Earth and Environmental Sciences.
Powdermaker Hall 156 | 12:15 pm

February 22, 2012

Gurur Ertem, the artistic director of programming and research at iDANS (Istanbul International Contemporary Dance and Performance Festival), will discuss contemporary dance practices in Istanbul and their relation to the transnational art scene. Hosted by Edisa Weeks, QC Drama, Theatre & Dance Department, in collaboration with the Kupferberg Center for the Visual and Performing Arts
Campbell Dome | 12:15 pm

Friday March 9 – Monday, April 30, 2012
Opening Friday, March 9, 6-8 pm

Exhibit: Interwoven World: Domestic and Nomadic Life in TurkeyInterlacing the rich aesthetics and significance of Turkic peoples across space and time, Interwoven Worlds highlights the carpets and textiles for which the Turks are celebrated. Pieces are displayed in both exotic and familiar interior tableaux, amid an array of ceramics, glassware, and metalware. These solutions for living reveal the influence of cultural and religious values and practices upon objects of everyday life.
Organized by Godwin-Ternbach Museum

Flushing Town Hall | 137-35 Northern Boulevard.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Discussion: Turkish and English: Salient Differences in Sound, Word, and Sentence Structure. Discussion of Jaklin Kornfilt’s upcoming talk led by Professor Robert Vago, Chair of QC's Linguistics and Communication Disorders Department.

Powdermaker Hall, Room 156 | 12:15 pm.


Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Lecture:  Turkish: How a Language Migrated from Central Asia to the Mediterranean. Jaklin Kornfilt is Professor of Linguistics at Syracuse University, specializing in syntactic theory and Turkish and Turkic linguistics. The author of numerous journal articles and the book Turkish Grammar, she will address how Turkish migrated from Central Asia to the Mediterranean.
Hosted by Professor Robert Vago, QC Linguistics and Communication Disorders Department.

Campbell Dome | 12:15 pm

Wednesday, March 21, 2012
Lecture: City of Cities: Byzantium, Constantinople, Istanbul. Talât S. Halman, who served as the first minister of culture of the Turkish Republic, will present on “City of Cities: Byzantium–Constantinople–Istanbul.” Professor and chairman of the Department of Turkish Literature at Bilkent University, Halman has published more than 50 books (including 12 collections of his own poetry in Turkish and English) and 3,000 articles in Turkish and English. Currently he is president of the UNICEF Turkish National Committee.
Hosted by Alex Bauer, QC Anthropology Department.

Campbell Dome | 12:15 pm

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Discussion: on Talat Halman’s March 21 talk, led by Professor Alexander Bauer, QC Anthropology Department.

Powdermaker Hall, Room 156 | 12:15 pm

April 11–14 & 18–20, 2012

Play: For Rent, by acclaimed Turkish playwright Ozen Yula, explores the criminal underworld of modern-day Istanbul through the desperate lives of the young people who flock there.  

Tickets: $10; $5 students with ID. To order tickets, call 718-482-5151

LaGuardia Performing Arts Center | Long Island City.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Concert: Turkish-born pianist Zeynep Ucbascaran. Ucbascaran, who has given many recitals and concerts throughout the world, has been praised for her “consummate
mastery . . . an art of crystalline clarity.” (Music & Vision)

Tickets: $36, $34 for seniors and QC faculty, staff and alumni, $15 students with ID.
To order tickets, call 718-793-8080.

LeFrak Concert Hall | 2 pm

May 2–June 29, 2012

Exhibit: Amulets, Nazars & Evil Eyes: Artists Looking Forward. Contemporary artists, writers, and musicians explore the Turkish evil eye and find commonality within their own culture.

Curated by Tara Mathison, QC Art Center.
For more information, call 718-997-3770.

Opening Reception May 2, 5–8 pm; Artists’ Talk 6–7 pm

Benjamin S. Rosenthal Library | 6th Floor | Art Center Hours

For more information on upcoming Year of Turkey events, visit For a campus map, visit:
For directions to campus, visit:

Queens College of the City University of New York (CUNY), founded in 1937, is dedicated to the idea that a first-rate education should be accessible to talented individuals of all backgrounds and financial means. Its more than 20,000 students come from over 150 nations and speak scores of languages, creating an extraordinarily diverse and welcoming environment. Located on a beautiful, 77-acre campus in Flushing, Queens College enjoys a national reputation for its liberal arts and sciences and pre-professional programs. Each year Queens College has been cited by The Princeton Review as one of the nation’s 100 “Best Value” colleges, thanks to its outstanding academics, generous financial aid packages, and relatively low costs. The college opened its first residence hall in August 2009. More info on Queens College at .


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