Born on May 20, 1967 in Mersin, Ali Özkan Manav studied composition in Istanbul at the Mimar Sinan University State Conservatory with Ahmed Adnan Saygun and Ilhan Usmanbaş. Upon receiving a full scholarship from the Higher Education Council in Ankara, he made his doctoral studies with Lukas Foss and Marjorie Merryman at Boston University (1996-99). He has been teaching at his alma mater, Istanbul State Conservatory of Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University since 1991.
His orchestral work Sforzati has been premiered in Munich with the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra in musica viva concert series in 1999. Upon receiving the Deutsche Welle Composition Prize in 2002 another orchestral piece, Portamento lento has been premiered in Beethovenfest in Bonn. His orchestral rendering of Ali Ekber Çiçek’s Haydar Haydar has been premiered by the Turkish National Youth Philharmonic Orchestra in their 2017 European tour, and performed by the London Philharmonic Orchestra in the Presidential Symphony Orchestra’s new concert hall in Ankara and in the opening concert of Istanbul’s Atatürk Cultural Center in fall 2021.
He is interested in investigating musico-cultural connections that, on the surface, are apparently remote or even incompatible. His music gains vital impetus from diversity and opposition. He considers a variety of dualisms, such as cultural, historical, structural, timbral, spatial, acoustical, potentially fertile.