violin: Betul Soykan

betul-soykan-photoDr. Betul Soykan joined the faculty of Wichita State University in the fall of 2016 as tenure-track Professor of Violin, having previously taught at the University of Texas-RGV in Brownsville. Her recent performances included recitals in Texas, California, Kansas and in Greece where she was invited to give violin master classes of a string week to many talented violinist coming from all over Europe. Trained at one of the prestigious conservatories of Europe, Betul holds four degrees in Violin Performance and String Pedagogy. Some of her influential teachers throughout her studies were: Igor Ozim, Iwona Wojciechowska and the great Romanian virtuoso Ion Voicu. Right after completion of her undergraduate degree, she was admitted to the Hochschule der Künste in Bern, Switzerland, with a full scholarship; a conservatory with an exceptional string department, founded by Max Rostal, to study with Ulrich Lehmann and later on with world-renowned violinist and pedagogue Igor Ozim. In Bern, she completed a double Masters in Violin performance and String Pedagogy. She received a special distinction award for her Concert Diploma recital as well as first prize in the Concerto Competition of Swiss, where she was chosen to perform Samuel Barber’s violin concerto with the Bern Symphony Orchestra. She has taken active part in master classes and seminars with world-renowned musicians such as Vladimir Spivakov, Igor Ozim, Igor Oistrach, Victor Pikaizen, Trio di Trieste, Stanislav Apolin, and Rudolf Baumgartner, Siegfried Palm. She has performed in some of the most prestigious halls around the world: Spivey Hall, Tonhalle, Concertgebouw, Grand Casino Symphony Hall Bern, Teatro dei Rozzi and others. Betul’s recording of Cesar Frank’s Sonata and other pieces by Swiss composers is available through Eroica Records. In this recording the Sonata by Melchior Ulrich is dedicated to her and was premiered in Switzerland in 1995. Her second CD album, the “Complete Sonatas of Joaquin Turina” was released in July 2015 by Centaur records.  Additionally, she is the founder and CEO of Atlanta Strings Conservatory Inc., a non-profit institution, dedicated to the education and promotion of String Music, primarily to underprivileged students, styled after European Conservatories. She also served as a faculty member at Gordon State College, Clayton State University, Hochschule der Künste Bern and Seminole College. Dr. Soykan has produced many great players throughout her teaching career and has served as a judge in many competitions as well as clinician for master courses.  Her students have won multiple awards, competitions and variety of auditions and her students admire her both as a scholar and performer.  Dr. Soykan completed her doctorate at University of Georgia with Dr. Michael Heald. Her dissertation and Audio-CD recording was on the violin works of Spanish composer Joaquin Turina. Betul Soykan performs on a violin made by Antonio Gagliano II, circa 1840.