Coppelia at the Ankara State Opera & Ballet

Yes, Turkey has a State Opera and Ballet, and it’s pretty good too!  One thing I miss about the States is going to the theater.  Just loved seeing plays! It is definitely more difficult to see a play here unless you have a full grasp of the Turkish language.  If you do see a play, I suggest reading the play first in English, or watching the movie first.

So I have taken to ballet and opera.  The Turkish State Opera and Ballet hosts a variety – including plays.  Last night we saw a ballet, Coppelia.

Coppélia concerns an inventor, Dr Coppelius, who has made a life-size dancing doll. It is so lifelike that Franz, a village swain, becomes infatuated with it and sets aside his true heart’s desire, Swanhilde. She shows him his folly by dressing as the doll, pretending to make it come to life and ultimately saving him from an untimely end at the hands of the inventor.

The full story line can be read by clicking here.

Photo Courtesy of Today’s Zaman – click the photo to read Today’s Zaman’s article about the ballet

It was really enjoyable!  I particularly found the second act very entertaining. The costumes and set were great as was the music and dancing!

If you are going:

  • As far as I can tell, ballet, opera and plays are done in Ankara, Istanbul, Izmir, Mersin, Antalya and Samsun.  There may be other locations.
  • Tickets are generally available two weeks before the show and sell out quickly.
  • You can find the schedule and more information by clicking this link:  http://www.dobgm.gov.tr/opera2013/index.html.  Click on your city and then the English description in order to view the website in English.
  • The last show of Coppelia in Ankara is April 19th.

There’s a New Shop in Town: Good Earth

I was strolling through GOP (Gaziosmanpaşa) in Ankara, when I came across this sign:

Good Earth

Good Earth

Good Earth!  A new shop in Ankara!  The name was intriguing, so I ventured in.  The shop was full of gorgeous textiles (kitchen & bath), candles, furniture, and more.  There was even a corner for kids!

They have just opened, so they are still stocking shelves.  Check out the photos:

According to its website, they

celebrate the heritage of the Indian sub-continent and of surrounding areas across Asia by creating unique design stories . . . GOODEARTH is based on values of sustainability.  Sustaining tradition and the ecology is a core value.

Wow!  Environmentally friendly and gorgeous at the same time!  So if you are looking for something to do this weekend in Ankara, shopping for a unique gift, or just out for a stroll, why not check out Good Earth?!  And if you run into Çağkan (the handsome young man in the photos who speaks wonderful English) tell him I sent you!

Photo Courtesy of Good Earth

If you are going:

Address:  Arjantin Cad, No 25

Tel: 0312 467 2000

Website:  www.goodearth.in

BOOKISH Store

A couple of weeks ago, I was strolling home from Gaziosmanpaşa (GOP) in Ankara, along streets I had never walked, when I came across a fabulous find – BOOKISH Store. Obviously a bookstore, but the English name was intriguing so I made my way inside.

Bookish Store

Bookish Store

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My first impression of BOOKISH was “super cute and cozy”.  It was a weekday in the late afternoon so it was not super busy.  It was definitely a place where I would want to spend some time – especially in that big chair in the window next to the cookbooks!

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I headed through the store, past the children’s section, and I started to feel a little strange.  Something was different from other Turkish bookstores.  English books were right up front.

Books for Kids

Books for Kids

I continued around the entire store and back to the front counter where I had a chat with the owner, Hülya Ateş, and her staff.

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Turns out the entire store is full of English books!  Every single title.  In addition, BOOKISH carries a large selection of English language magazines. So whether you are craving a taste of Bon Appetit or living in a 911 & Porsche World, BOOKISH has the magazine for you!

Variety of Magazines

Variety of Magazines

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask the staff.  The stop will be celebrating its 3rd birthday in May.  They all speak English and are very friendly and knowledgeable.

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If you are going, tell them you read about it here!

BOOKISH Store
Filistin Sokak No:17/A
Gaziosmanpasa – ANKARA 06700
T: 0312 447 47 34
F: 0312 447 47 24

 

Democracy NOW!

GET OUT AND VOTE!

Today is election day in Turkey.  The Prime Minister is not up for re-election, but his party is.  The three largest cities are Istanbul (over 14 million), Ankara (about 5 million) and Izmir (about 3.5 million).

Currently, the AKP controls Istanbul and Ankara.  Boo!  Hiss!  The hope is that they at least lose their reign over Ankara (and the dream is Istanbul too).

Photo courtesy of RT News

The problem as I see it is that there are waaaay to many political parties in Turkey.  You can see the list by clicking here.

Below is some reading from Turkish & International newspapers on the subject:

Turkey Politicians Make Final Push Before Local Elections, Wall Street Journal

Today’s elections set to overhaul country’s political landscape, Today’s Zaman

Turkey to receive results of local elections from Cihan news agencyToday’s Zaman

Over 50 million Turkish citizens to vote in tense ballot, Hurriyet Daily News

Looking back at Turkey’s local electionsHurriyet Daily News

LIVE: FEMEN shows up in Turkish PM Erdoğan’s constituency on election dayHurriyet Daily News

AKP faces tough test in Turkey’s local polls, AlJazeera

Opinion: Turkish local elections of international importance, Deutsche Welle