Emir Gamsız has one of the most extraordinary life stories among classical musicians. He started to play the piano at the age of 20 and he was a professional basketball player in the Turkish Basketball League before 20. After a year of private lessons, he became the oldest student, accepted to the piano department of Istanbul University State Conservatory in 1995. The Lions Club gave him “The Young Musician Of The Year” award in 1999. After completing the conservatoire, he went to Paris to study with Seba Baştuğ Şen and Turkish State Artist Hüseyin Sermet. His life story from sports to music has become a true inspiration for musicians who started their careers late.
Gamsız started playing professional concerts during his studies with Sermet in Paris. Since then, he’s been performing in various European countries, United States and Turkey. Apart from his engagements as a pianist, Gamsız is also known with his work that combines music with other fields. He prepared and broadcasted a radio show named “Notada Yazmayanlar (Unwritten on the Scores)”, penned articles for Andante music magazine, created a children’s show that was sold-out for 5 years between 2008-2013 and another season long sold-out children’s show in 2019-2020. He still writes articles for “Milliyet”, a national newspaper. Beyond his solo career, he’s often invited to play chamber music by well known artists such as Natalie Clein, Chen Halevi, Marina Chiche, Ittai Shapira ve Belcea Quartet. He founded Istanbul Trio in 2002 and New Yorker Trio in 2013.
During 11 years they lived in New York City, Gamsız created interdisciplinary projects with his wife and artistic partner Ege Maltepe who is an actress, theater director and a playwright. Together they organized Classical Sundays and Schubertiades in West Village’s legendary music cafe Caffe Vivaldi, between 2010-17. After meeting Woody Allen in Caffe Vivaldi, the duo started filmmaking. Currently they have three films in production; “Greatest Classic”, “Chekhov in New York” and “Transformism”, written by Maltepe and Gamsız, directed by Gamsız himself. Scenes from Scores is a classical music film project written and directed by Gamsız. Their films question the status quo, common human behavior and our responsibility and power in transforming the culture. After his concerts in Caffe Vivaldi, Gamsız was known as the Chatty Pianist. His concept concerts under this title continues to attract audiences of all ages and backgrounds. He performed a series of Chatty Pianist concerts in the most important venue in New York City, Lincoln Center, and received a welcoming reaction from New Yorker classical music audience. In the meantime, Chatty Pianist concerts continued in different festivals in Turkey. Gamsız met Pulitzer Prize wining composer David Del Tredici in The City College of New York where he taught for two years, and Del Tredici encouraged Gamsız to concentrate more on his own compositions. In 2013 Gamsız released his first album Alla Turca Around the World (Alla Turca ile Devr-i Alem) that consists his own works.
In summer of 2018 Gamsız and Maltepe returned to their hometown Istanbul and started a cultural institution called Kültür Yapım (Kültür Productions) and Bach Café. During the pandemic in 2020 they produced Bach Café App which provides cultural content to audiences as well as recognition and income opportunity for artists.