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Drom: Gaye Su Akyol

Turkish psych-rock artist makes her US debut
September 9, 2023, 7:00pm–9:00pm

This concert celebrates the music of Anatolia and marks the centenary of the founding of the Turkish Republic

Gaye Su Akyol is an Istanbul-based musician and artist, born in 1985. In her work, she redefines the concepts of power, desire, change and rebellion, hand in hand in tight-knit solidarity with women, queer and outcast communities, and rebels against societal gender roles, patriarchy, censorship, and oppression. She creates a universe of imagination, in which she constructs her own "counter-reality" against the stifling realities dictated by power. Without alienating from the land she was born into, she questions its representations, defines new symbols, and, while struggling with the complexities and political chaos of the concrete world, she chases after the practice of transforming a conservative world through collective dreaming.

Gaye Su Akyol has created her own unique language, taking the contrasts of traditional Anatolian music, Classical Turkish music, psychedelia, surf rock and post-punk, and combining them with her futuristic approach. Akyol, who, in 2014, released her first album “Develerle Yaşıyorum” (“I Live With Camels”)  in 2014, written and composed entirely by herself, defines her music as “universal in concept, local in spirit”. She expanded her audience through numerous concerts and festivals in Turkey, Europe, Middle East and the Far East, with the release of her first international album, "Hologram İmparatorluğu" (“Hologram Empire”) in 2016, released dually from German-based record label Glitterbeat, and Dunganga Records, a label which Akyol has co-founded with Ali Güçlü Şimşek. She had received rave reviews for her music and creations, from major media publications such as The New York Times, The Observer, The Guardian, The Financial Times, Pitchfork and The Wire. In her third long play, “İstikrarlı Hayal Hakikattir” (“Consistent Fantasy is Reality”), released in 2018, a record which she names “a practice of dreaming”, she not only writes and composes the entirety of the album, but also takes on the role of producer in the stages of production, arrangement and recording, and art director to the visual aspect of the record. With this album, she became the first musician from Turkey to be featured on the cover of Songlines, one of the top music magazines in England, and was awarded the "Best Artist" title in 2019.

Founded by two immigrant business entrepreneurs, Drom’s mission is to celebrate cultural diversity in the performing arts field by providing a physical space for artists from around the world to present their music, art and creative experiments. They live by the motto, #DromIsHome. From their nest in downtown Manhattan, they bring together a local and global community of like-minded individuals to share art and culture that transcend genre, class, race, and geography. Drom’s programs span diverse artistic forms including music, dance, theater, comedy and its stage is open to the next generation, as well as established performers.

Bryant Park Picnic Performances presented by Bank of America is a free outdoor festival that welcomes all New Yorkers to experience the city’s vibrant arts and culture. The series provides a platform for extraordinary artists and serves as a vital outdoor venue for a wide array of New York’s cultural institutions.

On the Lawn

Bryant Park lends out hundreds of free blankets on a first-come, first-served basis – or bring your own cotton or fleece blanket. To protect the lawn, please do not sit on waterproof materials such as plastic tarps, yoga mats, or inflatable chairs. 

Take a seat in one of the pre-set chairs on the lawn or grab a chair from the gravel. You can use a chair anywhere in the park except for the center-lawn blanket zone. 

Bring your own picnic, or purchase food and drinks from tents on the east side of the lawn. At all performances, attendees can discover new dishes and celebrate classics from the five boroughs with a rotating line-up of local artisanal vendors curated by Hester Street Fair. Stout NYC offers giant pretzels, gourmet popcorn and other light bites as well as a selection of beer, wine, and non-alcoholic beverages for purchase.

Find a parachute, giant Jenga, and more fun on the east side of the lawn at select events. 

We love dogs, but dog urine can leave the lawn with bald spots. Dogs are welcome on the gravel and bluestone – but please do not bring dogs on the lawn. 

Performances are cancelled when it is unsafe to be outdoors. In some cases, the lawn may be too wet to open but the performance may continue. Follow @bryantparknyc for day-of event updates. 

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