By Heidi Trautmann
Ilyas Abdullin, from the
Faculty of Education at the Near East University, Department of Music Education,
teaching the young buds of music the violin, had many reasons to celebrate;
there was first of all the 40th anniversary of his working life,
then his birthday….and as Hatice Salih Kerimgil was explaining to me, two of
his daughters have graduated this year from Near East University. That is
Near East University’s Rector
Dr. Suat Günsel supported the idea to celebrate the occasion in grand style in
order to thank him for his work in the service of music. So Ilyas Abdullin and
his colleague Burcu Müniroğlu Karagöz, our well known and beloved Cellist, realised
the idea of a birthday party on stage with friends coming from abroad to
celebrate with him.
And they all came: Prof.
Alexander Mekayev (Piano) from Turkey; Peter Mekayev (violin) from Turkey;
Liuba Beller (soprano) from Germany; Prof. Oleg Belotcerkovski (piano) from Russia;
Liliya Bukeeva (popstar) from Tataristan; Vucar Sultanov (Clarinet and
saxophone) from Azerbaycan), The Blues Brothers from Russia and Enver Izmailov
(jazz guitar) from Crimea.
It was a birthday party in the
true sense of the word. The evening was dutifully opened by Burcu Müniroğlu
Karagöz, with a glimpse into the photo album of his younger years. He was born
1954 in Azerbayjan and started to play the violin at the tender age of six. He
graduated from the Azerbayjan State Conservatoire and worked in his country for
the State Conservatoire and as concert master for the State Philharmoic
Orchestra. He came to Cyprus in 2003 and is teaching at the Near East
University. He became part of the well-known Trio Exprompte together with Burcu, the cellist. One part of
the evening’s programme was the musical piece ‘Happy Birthday to you’ by E.
Ludwig played by the Trio.
His friends, excellent musicians
from different musical genres stepped on stage right from among the audience
and serenaded Ilyas with their art. They were all separately introduced by
Burcu who had taken on the role of Show Master. What excellent performances
throughout the evening, starting with the Mekayews, that overlong young Peter -
I presume the two were father and son – played so beautifully, that people bent
forward in their seats. Chopin at its best by Dr. Alexander Mekayev; the soprano….an unbelievable voice….and so we
got served one after the other surprise, including the performance of some of
the music students; the programme went on with blues and jazz, on the guitar,
saxophone and clarinet, high class artists altogether.
The huge cinema screen became
active part in the course of the evening, either accompanying the musicians
with beautiful nature scenes transporting us into another world or letting us follow
closely the movements of hands or facial expressions of the musicians during
their performance; this was very impressing to see the fingers on the keys
while you heard the tunes. The photographer with his camera stood over them or
knelt at their feet and it brought the musicians closer, one could even see the
pulse on their throat.
More family and friends came
onto stage to congratulate Ilyas and he nearly collapsed under the weight of
The final songs were brought
in Turkish by the popstar Liliya who had learnt the words within a couple of
days and everybody was most pleased and joined in. They all came onto stage
again, the friends and brought with them their national flags, a very charming
colourful last picture.