You were born in Ankara Turkey, in 1971, when did you begin to take an interest in music of any kind?
Very Early. My father was a violinist and a conductor. The music was in my world from the beginning.
What musical education did you receive?
I’m an Opera Singer, a Tenor. I studied Opera in Turkey’s capital city Ankara at The State Conservatory.
At what stage did you begin to think that you would like to become a composer of music for film?
When I finished high school I was already a huge film buff. That summer I discovered the most important discovery of my life. All the films I was in love with have a common part. All off them were composed by the same composer – John Williams! And that moment I knew I was born to be a film music composer. I planned and shaped my education around this.
One of your latest scores is THE BUTTERFLYS DREAM, which is a really beautiful soundtrack, what size orchestra did you use for this assignment?
It was a fifty piece orchestra.
How did you become involved on BUTTERFLYS DREAM?
The director, Yilmaz Erdogan, was a friend of mine. I heard he was writing and going to shoot a film about two forgotten poets. It was the goal of my life to score that movie. He worked with some other composers for a year and then one day he called me on the phone and said ‘I’m in LA. Come & pick me up, let’s talk about my film’.
How much time were you given to score BUTTERFLYS DREAM and how much music did you compose for the movie?
I had the privilege to work with the director 6 weeks as I set up an editing room in my studio for him. He did his final cut while I was composing themes. Then another 4 weeks of pure composing. In total 3 months with the recording sessions. I composed 67 minutes of orchestral music.
Were you involved in the soundtrack release of BUTTERFLYS DREAM, i.e.: compiling or choosing specific cues that would appear on the compact disc etc?
Yes I was the only one on the charge actually. I did everything on the soundtrack; I was the producer of it. The main job was to down-mix the 5.1 recordings to stereo. It only took 5 weeks of mixing.
Do you conduct your film scores at all, or do you prefer to be supervising things from the recording booth when you are scoring a movie?
I conduct from time to time. On The Butterfly’s Dream, I supervised from the booth.
How many times do you like to see a project before you commence work on the music?
I like to see as much as I can, until I memorize the scene – the color of it, the speed of the edit, acting. Everything plays a role in my composition. With TBD, I saw the film so many times before I played a single note, I can’t remember.
Do you like to work in a set way, by this I mean do you approach a film score from the main titles to the end titles, or do you maybe compose a central theme and then build the remainder of the score around this?
I compose a central theme and compose around it. Finding the correct color of the music is my main goal. Then it sings itself. I only capture it.
Ennio Morricone, John Williams, Jerry Goldsmith, Lalo Schifrin, Vangelis.
Do you orchestrate all of your music, if so do you think that orchestration is an important part of the composing process and by orchestrating it yourself that you relay individuality to the music you have written?
I do my orchestrations. I compose with the orchestra, together we make the theme. Every single element of the melody line in the composition has its story in my heart, which constructs the main body of my music.
You have worked on video games, MONSTERS AND ALIENS, and also on TV series such as FEDAI, plus feature films and advertisements, what would you identify as the main differences between scoring a feature film and a video game, if indeed the scoring process does at all differ between the two?
Actually they are all quite same these days, in production quality angle. Of course, every field has their own dynamics. But there is always a client, temp love and a deadline. Only for my own compositions, I feel freedom, which I will release in 2014.
Also when working on a TV series such as FEDAI do you at any time re-cycle any of the music that you have written, by this I mean do you re-use any cues from say episode two in any of the subsequent episodes?
I usually do re-use themes in TV series. For the Fedai, I only scored the ‘Main Title’.
When working on a film score or any project at all, how do you work out your musical ideas, piano, keyboard or as is the case more often than not nowadays via more modern technology?
I always start to compose with piano, meaning my piano sounds from my keyboard. Then I build and write my orchestral mockup with the amazing sounds that are out there. I literally have all the Orchestral Sample Libraries available in the market today.
You worked on CANAKKALE 1915, which I understand was about Gallipoli, I see you are credited with additional music and end theme, did you come in after the score was written and provide additional cues?
Yes, the producer and the director of the film came to me one week before they locked their final mix saying they are searching for their final scene’s music. Normally I don’t like to get involved in projects, which have their own composers. But this time it was different; it was an epic historical film of our Independence War. And the part was the climax of the film. I only had a week to write, orchestrate, and record a small ensemble. But it turned to be a great one.
What is the state of the Turkish film industry at the moment, and do you work predominantly in Turkey, if so how do recording facilities compare to other countries?
It is in its growing process. I’m working for Turkey mostly but also exciting ones here in LA. For example, I licensed music for “The Making of The Amazing Spiderman” documentary, Star Wars Blu-Ray Ad Campaign, Marvel’s official Iron Man 3 Life Size Statue, web music and more and more to come..! J
Do you think that a good film score is able to help a bad movie?
No, not at all.
What are you working on at the moment?
Another astonishing film from Turkey.
Many thanks to the composer and also to Chandler Poling for his assistance with the interview.
White Bear PR