Last night, as if exploring Istanbul under atmospheric skies wasn't cool enough, OC tripped out at the Lutfi Kirdar Anadolu Auditorium -- although maybe it was a contraband flacon of Penhaligon's Hammam Bouquet that Malpensa customs didn't ~borrow~ combined with the jitter-inducing brackish & blackish Turkish coffee nursed from fine porcelain at Müzedechanga (which a lovely lunch companion inverted and read OC's future Prada-encased footsteps in thick coffee sludge dumped onto a bone-fine saucer, full of faraway lands, epic adventures and Yoda-like guides -- c'mon fate, we're tempting you), tangerine-flavored Turkish delight mixed with OC's Rouge D'Armani gloss, but we frankly lost our sh*t at last night's BIPO concert "You Wish, We Play" final gathering of the season (Sizin Seçtikleriniz -- how much cooler is that?), under the lanky wing span of Sascha Goetzel who could slam dunk a three point foul shot from courtside with a Western set list of Mahler, Strauss (his Four Last Songs sung by strident American-born, Austria-based soprano Michele Crider), Beethoven, Dvorak, Stravinsky, Brahms and more, democratically deigned by BIPO's power-to-the-people audience and played by precise woodwinds, spirited strings and juicy brass.
Straight outta Istanbul since its inaugural season of y2k, that motley crew of BIPO's young musicians, the Borusan Istanbul Philharmonic Orchestra, who were even cooler than those Turks that we prayed we would never bump into in a dark alley if we ever hopped into the DeLorean at 88 mph and were dumped out somewhere along the syllabus of our college history requirement timeline, Ancient Warfare, or along that ornamental Hagia Sophia breather in Art History class between the Byzantine and the Middle Ages.
The young musicians of Turkey's finest, led by Sascha Goetzel, the Vienna wonder who studied years at The Juilliard School and then under Seiji Ozawa, passion in his fingertips as he leads the well-oiled BIPO (since 2008) machinery from fishermen-laden, feral-cat roaming shores of the Bosphorus, where international artists come for edgy and spirited collaborations with a orchestra that in the next season will tackle Carmina Burana, Mahler's 3rd with the Santa Cecilia Orchestra, Salome with Nadja Michals and wraps on May 23, 2013 with a Thomas Hampson spectacular.
This is all part of Istanbul's thriving culture and arts scene, thanks to the The Borusan Holding, an old school industrial Turkey conglomerate that supports that eternal relic of lofty ideas and transcendence -- classical music (and art). With headquarters in the Yusuf Ziya Pasa Pavilion, a towering 20th century monolith enchanted known as the "house of spirits" for the whistles of the Bosphorus zephyrs that whips it daily, which was renovated lovingly by Hakan Kiran in the late 1990s, it's also a contemporary art museum where you can wander its nine floors stacked as high as Yves Saint Laurent stilettos on the weekend (not in YSL stilettos, natch, we rock instead Church's sweet Prince Albert linen slippers, OC's preferred travel shoe) with curated works by Jim Dine and Robert Mapplethorpe, inter alia, among the Borusan Contemporary Art Collection and a welcome-to-the-big-boys-club Mark Leveinson stereo system.
The Borusan Culture and Arts Foundation is along the Istiklal Caddesi, kind of like Vienna's Kärntner Straße. The library nerd in us (shhhhh!) loves its music library, where you might bump into an l'enfant terrible of the young Turkish composing jetset pouring over one its 7k music scores, 10k CDs, or almost 9k books or leaf through a seriously cool Ertug & Kocabiyik photography book that'd be right at home on your Poltrona Frau coffee table alongside Avedon's lean lines & Helmut Newton's amazon nudes.
l8rz, from Istanbul's minaret-dotted landscape, with love from the cats in Istanbul that melt hearts...BIPO bop hooray!