Turkish classical music composer and performer (B. 1918, Fatih / Istanbul – D. May 10th, 2005, Istanbul). Her father is İsmail Hakkı Bey, his mother was Zehra Hanım. Her family who noticed her talent in music in the elementary school ages and made her take sight reading and style lessons from Kanunî (T.N. zither playerst) Mustafa Bey for two years. Then, she took oud and maqam lessons from Udi (T.N. oud artist) Fahri Kopuz by continuing Daruttalim-i Musiki (a private music school). She learned to play oud by taking lessons from precious masters of our music such as the Udi Cevdet Kozanoğlu, Nuri Halil Poyraz and Mesut Cemil Bey, she improved her knowledge of music.

Melahat Hanım got married in 1938 with military doctor Hazım Pars. She had a personality with a love and respect for her husband and she expressed her admiration to him at every opportunity. She went to Bitlis for the eastern service of his husband and stayed away from her music studies for three years. After Bitlis, her husband was appointed to Ankara. Melahat Pars, who succeeded in the exam opened by Ankara Radio in 1944, worked there as a soloist. The lyrics of the song “Avare Gönül Yine Sensiz Hicrana Daldı” that she composed in 1948 was written by a family friend Yegâne Teksel. She firstly took the lyrics to her teacher Fahri Kopuz and requested him to compose it. Fahri Bey gave it back to her and said “Come on, let's do your first try, you compose these lyrics”. Upon that, Fahri Kopuz was very impressed with her composition.

Pars left Ankara in 1954 and settled in Istanbul. She participated in the Turkish music broadcasts of the İstanbul Radio. She became a member of the Executive Board of the İstanbul Municipality Conservatory in those years. Again, during these years she composed the song starting with words “Ben gamlı hazan sense bahar, dinle de vazgeç” which is now in every music lover’s lips. When Mesut Cemil Bey listened to this song and he said that she would be very famous and it happened so. When she noticed the whites in her hair in the light of lampshade in one night in 1959, she composed the song that has the words “Gümüş tellerle örsem saçının her telini / Kimse alamaz benden kalbimdeki yerini” (T.N.“If I hairweave every strand of your hair with silver strings / No one can take your place in my heart”) in kürdilihicazkâr maqam, of which the lyrics belonged to Şadan Kalkavan. It is also said that she composed this song for her husband Hazım Pars.

The Pars family had three children: Behiç, Erol and Cengiz. The artist, who composed the song with words “Bir mehtap var, bir de sen bu gecenin içinde” for her younger son Cengiz, she was also composing the melodies of her love to her father who died at a young age through her hearth: “Bin dertle yanan gönüle bir zerre deva yok”. She also composed the words of Fatih Sultan Mehmet in 1958 in hicaz maqam and müsemmen style.

Melâhat Pars served as a manager of Kalamış, Kadıköy and Marmara music associations that she founded in 1985 with her friends. Pars, who trained many artists for Turkish art music, died on May 10th 2005. She was buried in the Zincirlikuyu Cemetery following by a ceremony held in front of the İstanbul Radio. Singers such as Emel Sayın, Adnan Şenses, Zekai Tunca, Muazzez Abacı emphasized that the value of Pars had not been appreciated enough. It was said that “After listening to her, other great sounds come monotonous” about her. 

REFERENCE:  Rahmi Kalaycıoğlu / Türk Musikisi Bestekârlar Külliyatı (4 cilt, 1979), Avni Anıl / Anılar ve Belgelerle Musikimiz (1981), Mehmet Nazmi Özalp / Türk Musikisi Tarihi (1986), Yılmaz Öztuna / Büyük Türk Musikisi Ansiklopedisi (1990), Suat Yener / Musiki Kılavuzu TSM Antolojisi (1999), Ahmet Şahin Ak / Türk Musikisi Tarihi (2002), Vural Sözer / Müzik Ansiklopedik Sözlük (2005), Serap Kaşıkçı (Gazete Kadıköy, 2007), İhsan Işık / Ünlü Sanatçılar (Türkiye Ünlüleri Ansiklopedisi, C. 5, 2013) - Encyclopedia of Turkey’s Famous People (2013).        


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