Nefes to perform ‘Songs of Love from Balkans & Anatolia’ at SOAS


Next Friday, London based Nefes will be taking guests on a musical journey across Anatolia and the Balkans, playing a selection of contemporary and centuries-old folk songs from the region. The music is inspired by both Sufi and secular cultures of love.

‘Nefes’ in Turkish means breath. It is the essence of the self and soul, while also being the name of a form of musical poetry from Turkey’s Sufi tradition. The philosophy plays a big part in the musical works and performances of the Nefes Ensemble.

The group comprises of 10 singers and seven musicians playing instruments such as bağlama (long necked lute with frets), kanun, clarinet, violin, classical kemence (lyra), darbuka and bender (drum). Since its inception, one of their aims has been to perform folk songs in their traditional forms, maintaining and celebrating their regional styles.

Their SOAS concert is dedicated to Indian musician Narendra Kotiyan who recently retired after devoting 50 years of his life popularising Balkan folk music and dance in Britain. In tribute, the Nefes Ensemble will perform Greek, Turkish, Bosnian, Armenian, and Kurdish Kurmanci songs, reflecting the diverse rhythms and musical rainbow of this culturally rich region, which strikingly also shares many cultural attributes despite the ethnic, religious and linguistic variations of its diverse communities.

Tickets are on sale now via Eventbrite.

Concert details

Title: Songs of Love from Balkans & Anatolia 

Date: Friday 30th June 2017 

Event times: doors open 6.30pm, music starts 7pm, ends 9pm

Venue address: Brunei Gallery, SOAS, University of London, Thornhaugh Street, Russell Square, London WC1H 0XG

Admission: Tickets £10

Tickets: buy from Eventbrite

Artist info: follow Nefes via their Facebook page, Nefes.