By Yasemin Kalyoncuoglu
ANKARA (AA) - Turkey’s Gobeklitepe, the world’s oldest known temple, is the subject of the new upcoming opera directed by Murat Karahan, the tenor of the Turkish State Opera and Ballet.
The Turkish State Opera and Ballet has finalized preparations to present a great piece of art that reflects the mystery and value of history.
In an interview with Anadolu Agency, Karahan said that artists and technical team were working “very successfully” and that the stage bears a striking resemblance to Gobeklitepe.
He said Gobeklitepe is a place that changes the history of the whole world. “It is a place where the world takes a great interest.”
Karahan said the premiere will take place on Feb. 19 and that all the tickets for 3,000 seats were already sold out.
Ten foreign ambassadors to Ankara and opera singers from across the world will be among the audience.
He said the hats, flowers, and necklaces to be used in the opera were handcrafted by highly skilled women and were designed after great studies and researches.
Choreographer Volkan Ersoy also pointed out that Gobeklitepe's mystery has increased the interest and expectation in the work.
"I preferred the style of contemporary and neo-classical dance expression rather than classical dance," Ersoy said.
He said they will be performing to the music of Can Atilla with 30 ballet dancers along with Tan Sagturk, a famous Turkish ballet dancer.
Gobeklitepe is an official UNESCO World Heritage Site, and is recognized as the oldest temple in the world by many international organizations.
The site got extra attention after President Recep Tayyip Erdogan declared 2019 the year of Gobeklitepe.
Despite the hike in temperature, high numbers of visitors visit the historical temple, said Kamil Turkmen, chairman of Tourism Profession Committee in Sanliurfa Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
Gobeklitepe was found in 1963 by researchers from universities in Istanbul and Chicago. Since then, the excavations have never stopped.
The German Archaeological Institute and Sanliurfa Museum have carried out a joint work at the site since 1995 and have found T-shaped obelisks from the Neolithic era towering some 3-6 meters (10-20 feet) high and weighing 40-60 tons.
During the excavations, diverse historical artifacts like a 65-centimeter-long (26-inch) human statue dating back 12,000 years were also discovered.