A Gourd Violin Maker in İstanbul

In the midst of the chaos in İstanbul, the sounds of the music are rising from the hands of Ruşen Can Acet being a young craftsman and musician who was born in Manisa in 1989. When we enter into his workshop which he built in his house by overcoming all obstacles, we are seeing there is a serious work in view, our admiration becomes much more.

  • 14.11.2016
  • Aybüke Taşdirek & Barış Dikici

Musicianship is his family tradition… In fact, his mother and father met a stringed instrument (saz) course. The music passion of Ruşen began at a young age when his uncle presented the gourd violin being off the hands of Halil Çelik Usta from Uşak to him. He started to make the gourd violin in Manisa when he was 18. And he has maintained his works in his workshop in Mecidiyeköy anymore. He had lived in New York for a year after his graduation. He had performed concerts together with an Iranian musician interested in Sufi music, whom he met in there, in Central Park, subways, synagogues and Hindu temples in Bahamas, which was the most interesting one.

Ruşen has a wide repertoire of music. He is thirsty for blending different types of music. He is interested in polyphonic music in a vital medium: in Ruhi Su Associates Choir (Ruhi Su Dostlar Korosu). On the other hand, he is looking for polyphony in the instruments. He makes a point of polyphonic study in the group named “3×2” which he established with Kerim-Selim Altınok.


“There is a huge emotional accumulation, music transforms it into a unique energy and conveys to people.”

He tends to make more qualified Gourd Violins made from different kinds of tree because of his interest in woodworking. One of the great objectives of Ruşen, who is a mechanical engineer, is to produce violins which have better tone based on scientific facts by combining the engineering with the music. He made gourd violins from composite materials in the university and did studies related to their sound performance, so he had an essential accumulation of knowledge. He has tried to make gourd violins with better sound quality and standard in his workshop by using this experience. He thinks the reason why instruments made in Anatolia are more disadvantageous than Western ones is the lack of standard. He considers the engineering calculation is as important as the importance of the hand workmanship and the material of the musical instrument should resist to time as the sound quality.

“Music is a mathematical work,” says Ruşen. The technique is as important as the love if we want to improve ourselves and become internationally famous. We are departing from the side of the young craftsman hopefully without any doubt that gourd violins manufactured by such a forward-looking musician will have been recognized all around the world one day.

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