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'Every new experience brings me closer to my ultimate desires as a composer.'

Gaudeamus Award 2015 Nominee

Utku Asuroglu

Utku Asuroglu (1986) was a late developer. He started to play the piano at 17. “I immediately changed the score. Small adjustments. That is to say, I began to write my own music.”

The Turkish composer weighs up everything and anything. “Intuitively, I’m always in two minds.” He tends to hover between reality and the imagination. “This century fuels my paranoia. But in a good way!” Asuroglu searches, has misgivings, questions everything he sees. His music reflects this. His latest project is Capitaine Nemo, a piece based on Jules Verne’s ‘Twenty thousand Leagues Under the Sea’. The French writer used to be his hero. “Sometimes the world is predictable and I get bored. That’s when I think about Verne’s intriguing mix of fantasy and reality.”

Dreams often pop up in his oeuvre. “I contemplate unlikely events. The arrival of a dinosaur, an alien attack. What if we have the capability to travel to other planets? Today I’m on Mars, next weekend I’ll visit Venus or Jupiter. How would that affect our capitalist system? At first glance, this is unrelated to music but such thoughts can trigger musical ideas. It is a way to connect with society, other people, and life itself.”

Photo © Anna van Kooij