Burak Özdemir is a composer, bassoonist and director. He studied historical performance and composition at The Juilliard School, University of the Arts Berlin and at the Istanbul Conservatory. In 2008 he founded Musica Sequenza in New York; an ensemble which stands for the innovation of baroque music and intercultural production. In 2010 Burak moved back to Berlin, where he practices new performance modalities through self-developed methods. Burak has created internationally renowned productions such as “The New Four Seasons” and “Bach : The Silent Cantata” as well as the immersive sound installation series “Transmute”.
Burak’s musical activities have been seen in Europe, North and South America and Asia, in spaces such as Elbphilharmonie, Peter J Sharp Theater, Berghain, Berlin Philharmonic, Concertgebouw, Staatsoper Vienna, Teatro Colon of Buenos Aires. As a soloist he has appeared with the Istanbul Philharmonic, Juilliard Symphony Orchestra and Les Arts Florissants and collaborated with Sting, Matthew Herbert, Fazil Say, Rodriguez Jr, Andreas Scholl, Rias Kammerchor, Hernan Cattaneo, Rundfunkchor Berlin and Edita Gruberova.
In recent years Burak applied the language and tools of contemporary performance to vitalize and explore historical operas and sacred baroque repertoire. With “Fuga” (2010), “Opera del Futuro” (2015) and “Enigma” (2019) and established the genre of the electro-baroque. In 2015 Handel Festspiele Halle commissioned his production “Sampling Baroque”, which became the first electronic album release of Deutsche Harmonia Mundi. The following episode of “Sampling Baroque” was commissioned by the International Bach Festival Schaffhausen and premiered in Kammgarn, Switzerland in 2016. Shortly after it’s creation, “Sampling Baroque” has become an internationally touring program and visited festivals and spaces such as Istanbul Music Festival, Bach Akademie Stuttgart, Berghain, Radial System V, Oranjewoud Festival and broadcasted on Arte Concerts, Deutsche Welle, Swiss National Television and Radio Berlin Brandenburg.
In 2014 Burak received a commission by the Grand Palais Museum Paris to compose music for the “Diego Velazquez” world tour exhibition. The work was curated and filmed by Karim Ainouz, which later became an international DVD release on Arte Edition France.
Burak is currently focusing on the intensification of collaborative processes, such as the dialogic development of choreography and music. In 2013 he collaborated with the Sasha Waltz & Guests company at the Festival d’Avignon for the performance of “Dialoge”. He composed original music for this production, using his sound recordings from various Gezi Park demonstrations in Istanbul. The performance took place in the Opera Avignon including Burak’s free improvisation. In 2016 Burak wrote music and performed live for Sasha Waltz’s interdisciplinary and open exchange platform “Zuhören” at Radial System V. Following year he joined Sasha Waltz for the choreographic installation “Figure Humaine” for the inauguration of the Hamburg Elphilharmonie.
In 2018 Burak was commissioned by the Stadttheater Schaffhausen for his choreographic oratorio “Atlas Passion”; an interdisciplinary Bach production for voice, baroque orchestra, modern dance, video sculptures and light- and costume design. Over hundred artists performed in this production.
Istanbul born sound artist Burak records for Sony Music, Deutsche Harmonia Mundi, Edel and Neue Meister labels for his original scores and recompositions; “Vivaldi : The New Four Seasons” (2012), “Bach : The Silent Cantata” (2013), “Rameau a la Turque” (2014), “Sampling Baroque/Handel” (2016) and „Hermes“ (2019) together with Grammy awarded producer Da-Hong Seetoo, German recording engineer Christian Jaeger and Swedish DJ & Producer Van Rivers. Burak coaches educational workshops at universities and festivals around the world for bassoonists, ensembles and electronic musicians.