About the Speaker
Mehmet Ali Sanlıkol, DÜNYA
President of the DÜNYA Musicians’ Collective and director of the DÜNYA ensemble’s Boston Byzantine Music Festival performance, Dr. Mehmet Ali Sanlıkol began the study of western classical piano at an early age. He continued his study of classical and jazz piano throughout his early career, winning a scholarship to Berklee College of Music, where he won the Clare Fischer Award. While at Berklee, Dr. Sanlıkol founded with Onur Türkmen the band AudioFact, which toured internationally and with whom he released two CDs. He went on to study at the New England Conservatory of Music, earning his Doctor of Musical Arts Degree in Composition in 2004.
Dr. Sanlıkol is a founding member of DÜNYA. He is the director of many of the collective’s projects, including its celebrated A Story of the City: Constantinople-Istanbul, a two-disc CD and concert commissioned as part of Istanbul 2010—European Culture Capital. The project included a largely Boston-based cast of thirty-five musicians who, after recording the double CD, performed the program in the 4000 seat open air Harbiye Açıkhava Tiyatrosu in Istanbul. This critically acclaimed project was nominated for a World Music Grammy in 2011.
An internationally recognized composer and performer, Dr. Sanlıkol is also an authority on Ottoman music. His book, The Musician Mehters (ISIS Press & Yapı Kredi Yayınları, 2011), explores the organization and music of Ottoman Janissary Bands. He has taught at Berklee College of Music and the New England Conservatory and is currently a faculty member at Emerson College and College of the Holy Cross and a research fellow at Harvard University's Center for Middle Eastern Studies.