Ilkim Tongur

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a Turkish-Canadian composer based in Calgary

Whether composing for solo, chamber, orchestra or electronic media, her compositions create a capturing atmosphere in a highly expressive context. Her music is influenced by the multicultural texture of Istanbulite and Canadian communities capturing the elegant combinations of their music and creating a passionate fusion of their expressive qualities. She explores transformations of a variety of musical materials, ideas and atmospheres derived from the varied musical cultures. Her works are an elegant reflection of an aesthetic exploration of the blending of musical ideas between and among different traditions that resulted from centuries of communal interaction, all of which are distilled by her own contemporary sensibility.

As a composer, she has been commissioned by the GroundSwell, Jari Juhani Piper, Sarah Kirsch, Lacie Marchand, Edmonton New Music Showcase and Damla Tuncer. Her works are performed in Canada, Turkey, Switzerland, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Among the leading ensembles performed Tongur’s music are Hastings Philharmonic Orchestra, Land’s End Ensemble, Musica QuLacoza, Winnipeg Symphony Wind Ensemble, and TimpePoint Ensemble. Ilkim completed composition and conducting undergraduate, and master’s programs at the Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University in Istanbul, composition master’s degree at the University of Manitoba and she holds a Ph.D. in composition from the University of Calgary. Hasan Uşarsu, Babür Tongur, Michael Matthews and Allan Bell. were her composition teachers. Her Dissertation topic focused on combinations of several musical traditions, architectural features and cultural symbols of varied cultures who shared the Golden Horn peninsula and composing of a multi-movement large-scale work based on this research, Sacred Voices of the Golden Horn.​

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2019 Pegasus (Wind Band) Commissioned by Wendy Freeman

Atatürk 19 May 1919 (Orchestra) Composed for the fınals of Hastings Phılharmonic Composition Competition Finals

2018 Pondering Maze of Dream (Bass Clarinet) Commissioned by TimePoint Ensemble

Six Scenes (Piano) Commissioned by Edmonton New Music Show Case / Funded by the Alberta Foundation for Arts Winter Lord (Orchestra)

2017 Wine Coloured Smokes (Oboe, Ney, and Organ) Commissioned by Damla Tuncer

The Owl (Bass Clarinet and Tenor Saxophone) Commissioned by Lacie Marchand


Sacred Voices of the Golden Horn (Flute, Clarinet in Bb, Percussion, Violin, Cello. Piano and Electronics) 2016


Original Score for the Main Stage (Electroacoustic)


The Snapshots (Wind Quintet) Commissioned by GroundSwell Yakamoz (Piano Trio) Quilt and Dawn (Solo Cello) Old Shaman (Alto Sax, Piano.) Queen of the Cities (Soprano and live electronics) Commissioned by Sarah Kirsch


Ancient Butterflies (Orchestra) Haze and Chaos (Flute, Clarinet in Bb, Violin, Cello, Piano.)


Prelude (Impression) and Fugue (Solo Piano) Malleus Maleficarum (Flute (Picc., Sop., Alt.) and Piano.) Fragile (Orchestra) Three pieces for Timpani (Timpani) Hora de Estrellas (Soprano, Piano, and Electronics.)


Blue Wish Tree (Solo Clarinet in Bb) S. Q. (Sax Quartet)

Sacred Voices of the Golden Horn

Ancient Butterflies