Deniz Küstü
The Sea-Crossed Fisherman Opera in four scenes by Michael Ellison

Based on the novel Deniz Küstü (1978) by Yaşar Kemal

Director/Librettist/Dramaturg: Simon Jones
Choreography: Zeynep Tanbay
Video Performance & Installation : NohLab -Candaş Şişman, Deniz Kader

Hezarfen Ensemble

Conductor: Michael Rafferty 

DENİZ KÜSTÜ is a piece of total music-theatre, composed by Michael Ellison and adapted from Yaşar Kemal’s 1978 novel by Simon Jones. This dynamic new opera brings this modern gem of Turkish literature to the stage for the first time. In his visionary novel, Kemal creates the tragic story of a village loner – Fisher Selim – and an orphaned street-child – Zeynel – to explore many of the crucial challenges the world faces today: destruction of the earth’s resources, the devastating impact of global trade on traditional lifestyles and communities, and the ordinary person’s sense of powerlessness in the face of corruption and injustice. To realize Kemal’s penetrating analysis of these challenges, the opera moves through four scenes, which contrast the seascape of the Marmara Sea – with its swordfish and dolphins and mermaids in its changing moods – with the dizzying, teeming metropolis of Istanbul and one small fishing village, Menekşe. The work moves from social realism to magical realism to make its powerful critique. 

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