Gürer Aykal

Gürer Aykal began his musical education in Ankara State Conservatoire and graduated from the Violin Department in 1963 as Necdet Remzi Atak's student and from the Composition Department in 1969 as Adnan Saygun's student. The same year he won a government scholarship, traveling to England to be tutored by leading conductors such as Andre Previn and George Hurst in London's Guildhall Music School. He completed the Advanced Conducting Departments of Guildhall Music School and Royal Music Academy with first degrees (1972). Going to Italy afterwards, Aykal received Conductor Medal from Academia Chigiana and completed his education in Santa Cecilia Academy as an assistant for Franco Ferrara. Meanwhile, upon Adnan Saygun's wish, he also received Gregorian choir music and Renaissance polyphonic music education under Bartolucci in Pontificio Instituto di Musica Sacra. Appointed as Presidential Symphony Orchestra's Permanent Conductor in 1975, Aykal served as the General Director of State Opera and Ballet for some time. He also founded the Ankara Chamber Orchestra together with Suna Kan and conducted it in more than a hundred concerts both in the country and overseas. Aykal gave many concerts with the leading orchestras in the European countries; supervised the South America and Caribbean Tour of British Chamber Orchestra; conducted Amsterdam Concertgebouw Chamber Orchestra. Also an educator he taught as a professor of orchestra conducting in several universities both local and foreign. Teaching advanced orchestra conduction in Indiana (Bloomington) University, Texas Tech, and UTEP Universities in the USA, Aykal currently fulfils the same duty in Bilkent University. Receiving the title of 'State Artist' in 1981 for his achievements and services on an international scale, Aykal has recorded CDs with several leading music groups such as London Philharmonic Orchestra, North German Radio (NDR), Ankara Chamber Orchestra, Presidential Symphony Orchestra, and El Paso Symphony Orchestra, performing the works of great composers like Bach, Beethoven, Mozart, Tchaikovsky, Elgar, Smetana, Ravel, Erkin, and Saygun. Acting as a conductor and general music director in the USA for a total of 16 years, Aykal was the Permanent Conductor and General Music Director of El Paso Texas Symphony Orchestra between the years of 1991 and 2003, also receiving the title 'Professor Emeritus.' Undertaking the duty of founding and improving Antalya State Symphony Orchestra in 2000-2004 Aykal currently continues his duties as Borusan İstanbul Philharmonic Orchestra Permanent Conductor and General Music Director.