‘‘İstanbul Makamı’’ is a cinematographic improvisation with 5 musicians from abroad who fall in love with the Maqam Music (Classical Ottoman Music) and decide to live in Turkey believing that music might best be learned in the lands it was born and performed. Each has different stories but the desire to find their own paths despite modern times’ obligations intersects their roads. Constructing three layers -music, İstanbul and combination of both in the filmic platform- the film is a modern times fairytale in praise of İstanbul and its classical music; a film about obstinacy, desire, looking for one’s own raison d’etre, travelling, being a world citizen and the power of music to understand the other and express oneself in the pursuit of intertwining stories following passion. It tells unique stories about the common dreams we are afraid to approach, and thus, tries to give inspiration to us to free ourselves.
Özlem Sariyildiz was born in 1978. She completed her BA in Industrial Design and MS in Media and Cultural Studies İn Middle East Technical University, Turkey and started her PhD in Graphic Design in Bilkent University. She started to engage with video and documentary during her BA and continues to tell stories since. Her filmography includes There and Back (2013), Damn the Dams (2012), and Water Salt Flour (2011).
Yunus Emre Aydin was born in 1982. He graduated from İstanbul University Department of Philosophy and continued his MS in the same department. He works as a professional photographer and plays ud. İstanbul Makamı is his first documentary.