Our acclaimed Language of Food Series continues with an exploration of the cultural roots and contemporary influences of Turkey. The evening begins with a social hour featuring a Turkish bazaar, with crafts, jewelry,and artifacts available for purchase. Regional wine will be served, as well as traditional Turkish beverages like anise and pomegranate tea. It will be followed by feast of authentic Turkish specialties, prepared by Sureyya Gukeri of Seattle’s Café Turko. Gukeri is passionate about Turkish culture and simple, delicious meals, and will lead a cooking class from 2:00-5:00pm on March 28, focusing on authentic Turkish food that can be made quickly and easily with local ingredients, as well as the country’s famous coffee culture. Cost of class is $35.
The evening’s performance will be feature Turkish folk music by long-time Turkish resident Bob Beer on balgama and kemenche fiddle, and Izumi Fairbanks, on drums, balgama, and kemenche. Northwest FolkLife Festival favorites the Anadolu Youth Dancers will also be performing. In addition, members of The Mevlevi Order of America’s Mutrib Orchestra will present a program of classical Turkish music as well as songs and dances specific to Turkish Sufism. These will include ilahis, a call and response form of singing, in which the audience is encouraged to participate, sung by vocalist Jemilla Goldstein, and a demonstration of the Sufi practice of “turning.” The evening will also include performances of Turkish popular music and belly dance. Cost of the event is $65.
NWLA is pleased to collaborate on this event with Dilek Tezcan Anderson and Yasemin San of the Turkish cultural organizations Turckcha and Tacawa. We are also deeply honored to host Ufuk Bey Gokcen, the Turkish Honorary Consul of Seattle, and Recep Demir, Turkey’s Commercial Attache, at our event.
In conjunction with the Language of Food event, on Sunday, March 22, at 4:00pm NWLA will present a slideshow and panel discussion with members of the Turkish community of “The Treasures of Turkey,” hosted by Umit Dogan of Treasures of Travel. Come learn about the country’s cultural and natural wonders, and get travel tips. Admission is by donation at the door.
Both events will be held at the NWLA Cultural Center in Langley, on Whidbey Island. Overnight accommodations are available in the Cultural Center’s luxurious Guesthouse, please inquire.