Monday, October 31, 2011

The Pekinel Sisters

image via
I write lots about Turkish pop music, but next to nothing about classical music. (Shame on me. I was a violinist, once upon a time.) To remedy that, I give you the Pekinel Sisters.

They are identical twins (obviously).
They are Turks (not obviously).
They are internationally acclaimed concert pianists.

Güher and Süher Pekinel made their public debut at only six years old, and have swept people of all continents away with their piano duets.

Piano Magazine has an interesting article, The Pekinels in Harmony, where the sisters explain how independent they are of each other. They discuss the "twinness" they fought against and how it helped define their unique style. Rather than being identical, the music of one compliments the other, almost as if they are finishing each other's thoughts. But not quite. Apparently, understanding your twin doesn't mean you are the same as your twin.

The Pekinels speak five languages: German, English, French, Turkish, and I don't know what the fifth language is, but I think music should count as a sixth. Their distinguished education includes credits and/or degrees from:

Conservatoire de Paris
Musikhochschule of Frankfurt
Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia
The Juilliard School - Masters
Bogaziçi University - Honorary PhD

All that international study qualifies them for TCK status, in my book.

The Pekinel Sisters are also Honorary State Artists of Turkey, and they are enthusiastic supporters of music education in Turkey and abroad. They established three projects for children:
  • G&S Pekinel Music Department at TEVITOL, a private boading school for gifted students in Turkey
  • "Young Musicians on World Stage", 13 scholarships for Turkish students to study internationally
  • "Orff Schulwerk Project" to encourage creativity in pre-school and primary school students. In Turkey, Austria, and Germany
Have a listen:

Related articles:

Pekinel sisters on stage with 13 young talents


LTM said...

AND they're redheads! How very cool, Carolyn. I love classical piano, and I think it's awesome that they're doing these projects for children. Very great.

Happy Halloween! :o) <3

Old Kitty said...

Oh wow - love how they play together - they are so consumed by their playing - what beautiful talented and altruistic sisters!! Good for them!! Sublime!! Take care

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