Theater and cinema actress, director (b. 11th October
1928 in Istanbul- d. 11 November 2019, Istanbul). Her original name is Ayşe Yıldız. The theater player Müşfik
Kenter is her brother and Şükran Güngör, who is also a theater player, is her
husband. She grew up in a wealthy family environment where books are read and
music is listened frequently. Her English mother Olga Cynthia, who came to and
settled in Turkey in 1920, changed her name as Nadide Kenter when she took the
citizenship of the Republic of Turkey. Her father was the Turkish diplomat
Ahmet Naci Kenter… Her maternal grand-father had a theater group who staged the
plays of Shakespeare in
Kenter worked in Ankara Devlet Tiyatrosu (T.N. Ankara State Theatre) for eleven
years. She won the scholarship of “Rockefeller” and she made studies on new
techniques in acting and the education of acting in American Theatre Winng, Neighbourhood Play House and Actor’s Studio.
After that, she was appointed as a teacher in the Ankara State Conservatory.
She left Devlet Tiyatrosu and worked almost one year with Muhsin Ertuğrul
(1959). She founded the Community of “Kent Oyuncuları” in
Prof. Yıldız Kenter also worked as the Head of Department and teacher of the Ankara State Conservatory, the Istanbul Municipality Conservatory and the Department of Theater at the State Conservatory of the Istanbul University. The artist also gave lessons of theater at Koç University.
Yıldız Kenter got on the stage in many plays of famous local and foreign theater writers. Her following plays are watched with a big admiration by the Turkish audience:
12. Gece, Finten, Yağmurcu, Çöl Faresi, Öfke, Salıncakta İki Kişi, Nalınlar, Ayak Takımı Arasında, Pembe Kadın, İnsan Denen Garip Hayvan, Üç Kız Kardeş, Çiçu, İçerdekiler, Oturma Odası, Günden Geceye, Seneye Bugün, Yürüyen Geceyi Dinle, Bodrumdaki Pencere, Harold ve Maude, Babalar ve Oğullar, Cyrano, Arzu Tramvayı, Savunma, Uzaklar, Bir Çift Kanat, Van Gogh, Şafak Yıldızları, Sevgili Yelena Sergeyevna, Maskeli Süvari, Kuvayı Milliye Destanı, Fehim Paşa Konağı, Konken Partisi, Çok Uzak Fazla Yakın, Ramiz ile Jülide, Nutuk, Maria Callas, Gece Mevsimi, Salıncakta İki Kişi, Ben Anadolu, Anna Karanina, Hep Aşk Vardı , Sırça Kümes, Martı and Nükte.
In the cinema, she was also well-liked with her movies; Vatan İçin (1951), Ağaçlar Ayakta Ölür (1964), İsyancılar (1965), Pembe Kadın (1966), Yaşlı Gözler (1967), Anneler ve Kızları (1971), Elmacı Kadın (1971), Fatma Bacı (1972), Ablam (1973), Kartal Yuvası(1974), Kızım Ayşe (1974), Bir Ana Bir Kız (1974), Zulüm (1983), Hanım (1988), Güle Güle (1999), Büyük Adam Küçük Aşk (2001), Sen Ne Dilersen (2005), Beyaz Melek (2007).She was watched by a wide audience in the following television series: Uğurlugiller (1990),Aşk ve Gurur (2002), Saklambaç (2005).
Yıldız Kenter was selected as “the Woman of the Year” in the year 1962 because of the services she gave to the theater. She was deemed worthy of the award of “Altın Portakal” for three times as a cinema actress. She received the award of “Adalaide Ristori” by the Italian Culture Association in Roma in 1984. She was selected as the “Best Actress” with her role in the movie “Hanım” in the Corsica-Bastia Film Festival in the year 1989. She was also deemed worthy of more than fifty awards in the following years. She has a memory book named Hep Aşk Vardı (2003).
REFERENCE: Mustafa N. Özön - Baha Dürder / Türk Tiyatrosu Ansiklopedisi (1967), Niyazi Akı / Çağdaş Türk Tiyatrosuna Toplu Bakış / 1923-1967 (1968), Metin And / Cumhuriyet Dönemi Türk Tiyatrosu (1983), Atilla Dorsay / Türk ve Dünya Sineması Ansiklopedisi (Turhan Gürkan ile, 1983), Ömer Ayhan / Siyah Beyaz Bir Öykü (Türk Sinemasının 1960’lı yıllardan günümüze kadarki yılları, 2001), Yıldız Kenter / Hep Aşk Vardı (2003), Alim Şerif Onaran / 20. Yüzyılın Son Beş Yılında Türk Sineması (2005), Agah Özgüç / Türk Sinemasının Kadınları (2008), İhsan Işık / Ünlü Sanatçılar (Türkiye Ünlüleri Ansiklopedisi, c. 5, 2013), Dikmen Gürün / Tiyatro Benim Hayatım - Yıldız Kenter'in Hayatı (2015), İhsan Işık / Resimli ve Metin Örnekli Türkiye Edebiyatçılar ve Kültür Adamları Ansiklopedisi (12. Cilt, 2019), Yıldız Kenter hayatını kaybetti! (sabah.com.tr, 17.11.2019)
"The Woman of the Year 1962"
Celebrating a Half Century on Stage
Yildiz Kenter, a leading figure in the theatre life of Turkey, celebrated her fiftieth year on stage with special programmes organized by various universities attended by her friends, fans, theatre lovers, critics, professors and students from theatre departments. Kenter is the perfect role model for young people who are lured by the theatre. Kenter's aim was to be a stage actress but not without getting the necessary education and training. After graduating from Ankara State Conservatoire, her career began with her role in Shakespeare's "Twelfth Night".
Since she loved the theatre and the stage, she accepted a scholarship and went to the American Theatre Wing, the Neighbourhood Play House and Actor's Studio to further her career. She worked at the Ankara State Theatre for 11 years and during this time she was one of the stars of the theatre. She played very important roles, which have remained in the minds of audiences for years. That is to say she was one of the first stars to create a love for the theatre in the youth of the day.
The roles she played were very diverse. Even in he beginning of her career, she played characters from the plays of William Shakespeare, Jean Anouilh, John
Osborne, Abdulhak Hamit Tarhan, and Nazim Kursunlu. Later she was appointed to a teaching post at the State Theatre.
However in 1959 she resigned from the State Theatre and went to Istanbul, where in a short while she formed her own theatre group with her husband, and her brother, which was called the "Kent Theatre". In addition to playing major roles in the theatre she also directed plays and was the dramaturge in many of them.
In 1962 she was chosen "The Woman of the Year" for her contributions to Turkish theatre. Among the plays she staged or played in are "The Seagull" by Anton Chekhov, "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf" by Edward Albee, "A Woman Called Pembe" by Hidayet Sayin, "The Straws of Mikado" by Melih Cevdet Anday, "A Streetcar Named Desire and "I, Anatolia" by Gungor Dilmen Kalyoncu.
Yildiz Kenter also played in movies. She won the "Best Actress Award" at the Bastia Film Festival held in Corsica in 1989 for her role in the film "Hanim". She
has been an idol for young theatre fans who are interested in theatre and hope to reach the peak of the profession.
Yildir Kenter received "The State Artist" Award in 1981. She also received the "Adelaide Ristori" award from the Italian Cultural Center in 1984. She has made
Turkish women proud because of all her achievements . In 1998 she was honoured by the Finnish World Women's Institute as one of the most successful 100 women. Her interpretations of roles and her contributions to the theatre have been appreciated by everyone. The afore-mentioned are just a few of the wards she has won.
Among some of her other awards are the ones she has received from Dame Diana Rigg presented at the International Istanbul Festival in 1997, the Woman of
the Year Award distributed by the Ankara Artistic Institute in 1998 and the Presidential Great Culture and Arts Award in 1998.
Yildiz Kenter celebrated her fiftieth year on stage with programmes organized by various universities and with her colleagues, and lecturers who have contributed to these programmes.
KAYNAK: Türk Kadını (wowturkey.com, 04.08.2016).