Opal İpek Beşli was born in Ankara in 1985. Her interest in music grew through attending concerts regularly with her violinist mother. By the age of eight she had decided she wanted to play, and began lessons. In 1997, she entered the Ankara State Conservatory of Hacettepe University where she studied with Prof. Betil Başeğmezler. She graduated from the viola division of the school in 2007 with a BMus degree. In the same year, she joined the Presidential Symphony Orchestra. Opal İpek Beşli loved both the soloistic and symphonic sides of music, yet she focused on the symphonic side of music and improved her experience in this regard during her years in the orchestra. She was particularly enthusiastic about national and international concert tours of the orchestra, when they played for different audiences. She played in these concerts as an orchestra member at the Presidential Symphony Orchestra:
2010 October, ‘Asia Music Festival’ at the Tokyo Opera City Concert Hall, the Presidential Symphony Orchestra, Rengim Gökmen conductor.
10 July 2010, Kaman Kalehöyük Archeology Museum, the Presidential Symphony Orchestra, premiered piece `Yoshiyuki Kozu’ (Prince of Japan) - Sunset in Kaman, Burak Tüzün conductor.
4 June 2010, ‘Festival of World Symphony Orchestras Moscow’, the Column’s Hall of the House of Unions - the Presidential Symphony Orchestra, Cem Mansur conductor.
21 January 2010 ‘Concert for the Opening of EU Term Presidency of Spain’, Ankara, Turkey, the Presidential Symphony Orchestra, Antoni Ros Marba conductor, Pablo Sainz Villegas guitar.
14 October 2008, Alte Oper Frankfurt, the Presidential Symphony Orchestra, Rengim Gökmen conductor.
8 April 2008, International Music House, Moscow-Russia, the Presidential Symphony Orchestra, İbrahim Yazıcı conductor, Fazıl Say piano.
In addition, she had been invited to play as an orchestra member for the Istanbul Music Festival by the Borusan Philharmonic Orchestra.
21 June 2011, the Istanbul Music Festival, Aya Irini, the Borusan Philharmonic Orchestra, Sacha Goetzel conductor, Hillary Hahn soloist.
Opal İpek Beşli currently studies with James Sleigh who is a viola professor at the Royal Academy and she is really grateful to study with him. Between 2011-2012, she participated in the British Viola Series as a viola student at the Academy. Moreover, she performed in two fantastic projects as an orchestra member at the Royal Academy of Music. One of them was on 21-23-25-28th November 2011, Berlioz ‘Beatrice et Benedict’, Sir Colin Davis conductor, Royal Academy of Opera. The other one was on 9th March 2012, Berlioz ‘Harold in Italy’, Sir Mark Elder conductor, the Royal Academy Concert Orchestra.
She considers her postgraduate programme at the Royal Academy of Music as an opportunity to become more familiar with the soloistic side of music, in particular, the repertoire of the 20th century. Thus she will be able to further enhance her solo viola and chamber music repertory. In addition, living in a great international music centre will contribute to her musical and life experience.
Opal is grateful for the generous support of two anonymous Turkish philanthropists and the Turkish Government.