Çokfonik – Turkey’s Leading Choir

Blackouts and competition hitches don't hold back this spontaneous choir from unfailing excellence!

A challenging performance and how you faced it.

In an international choir festival & competition, a power blackout occurred just before our turn! After waiting for ten minutes, we decided to take stage. To turn the crisis into advantage, our conductor changed the song line up and we sang emotional songs at first – in the dark!

QUICK FACTS

Choir Name: Çokfonik
Location: Adana / TURKEY
Style: A Capella, Classical, Folk
Number of singers: 35
Follow us on Instagram, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, and our Website!

An emotional moment in rehearsal?

A couple of years ago one of our tenors proposed to one of our sopranos! While the whole choir was waiting for rehearsal in the hall, suddenly our conductor started playing a very emotional song with piano. All the choir members joined the song. The future groom came and made his proposal. It was a big surprise for bride-to-be. She answered “YES” in tears. It was a sentimental moment in our choir’s history. They’ve been married for two years now.

A funny moment in performance:

In a competition, it came time for our African Traditional Song in which we were using a couple of percussion instruments. Our conductor looked at the chorister who was responsible for the percussion and he realized that he forgot to bring them to the stage. The conductor quickly left the stage, grabbed the instrument bag, handed out the instruments and put the bag on the stage! At the beginning of the concert we were just 25 choir members on stage, but in the end, we had one more: the bag ☺ The funniest point: we won “Success in Choir Discipline and Aesthetic Outlook Prize”.

What was one lesson you learned from being in a competition?

Don’t forget your percussion! If you do, don’t leave the carrying bag on the stage!

An emotional moment you had in a performance?

Last year we organized the first of “Cokfonik School Choirs Festival” in order to motivate music teachers who had created choirs in their own schools – especially where the socially and economically disadvantaged students are most. At the end of the session, all choirs took to the stage to sing one last song together. Sharing the stage with 122 students, most of whom were on stage for the first time of their lives was an amazing moment for Cokfonik. Their happiness, excitement and pride in the eyes of their families were priceless. Here’s a picture:

Underprivileged school choirs coming together to sing finale with Cokfonik in “Cokfonik School Choirs Festival” – March 2018.

Choir Madness: something you do with your choir that others might find bizarre or strange!

We have a ritual: One of our singers takes the camera in selfie position, other members huddle together and get in the camera angle, and then ‘Action’! We video us all spinning together like this!

3. İzmir Mozart Polifonik Korolar Festivali konserimiz öncesinde, Adana'daki son provamızı keyifle tamamladık. Geleneksel Çokfonik selamımızla geliyoruz, bekle bizi İzmir. @aydinanill #çokfonik #koro #çokfonikkoro #adana #çokseslimüzik #izmir #mozartakademi #polifonik #korolarfestivali #sanat #konser #etkinlik #art #music #choir

Posted by ÇokFonik Koro on Thursday, June 8, 2017

A turning point in the life of your choir?

Attending Dardanelles International Choir Festival in 2015 was the turning point in the choir’s life. At that time, Cokfonik was a 3-year-old choir and didn’t have much chance to see what other choirs doing especially international ones. During the festival we found chance to meet other choristers, watch their performances and share experiences with them. Since that time our repertoire has really developed and our performances are more lively and moving.

What is something you do in rehearsals that surprises new members?

We do some ice-breaker drama activities at the beginning of every new season to meet and socialize new members. They say that at first the activities seem very childish, but after a while, are surprised by how much they enjoy them.

A favorite piece of repertoire & why

One of the famous and successful songwriter Mehmet Güreli’s song “Kimse Bilmez” which was arranged into polyphonic form by our conductor Anıl Aydın is our favorite piece in the repertoire. We all love the song, and it is very enjoyable to sing because of its sophisticated form.

What is your audition process?

We announce the audition dates and terms on our social media accounts and expect people who are interested in polyphonic music and Cokfonik, to fill the application form. The applicants are invited for audition; in the audition they are asked to sing a song of their choice and our conductor makes some melodic, harmonic, and rhythmic ear training exercises.

What was a very special performance and what made it special?

In 2015 we attended Dardanelles International Choir Festival. Last song of our 20 minute performance was a polyphonic arrangement of a Turkish folk song sung by choirs extensively. When we started the song, our conductor turned his face to the hall and all  of the the other choirs in the hall started to sing the song with us. Approximately 500 hundred people were singing the same song together and it was a very impressive moment.

Special thanks to the Çokfonik choristers for their contributions to this article!

Written By
Anıl Aydın is the first graduate of choral conducting department of Mersin State Conservatory. He has been working as the choir master of Mersin State Opera and Ballet since 2010. He became conductor of Cokfonik Choir in 2013.

1 Comment

  • İt’s a great honour and pleasure to be a member of Çokfonik ( çok=poly, fonik=phonic , by the way 🙂 🙂 )

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