Symphony orchestras are institutions that have been serving in the field of classical music for centuries. The history of the symphony orchestras in Turkey is not as old as the Europe orchestras. These orchestras have been supported both by the state and the private sector. The symphony orchestras which continue to work under state auspices have gained an important place in the field of art by giving concerts regularly since their establishment. The structure and works of the symphony orchestras have been studied by researchers who are in the fields of management, organisational studies and psychology. The subjects of these researches, largely conducted with the participation of orchestra members, have been determined to be as leadership, interaction between the conductor and orchestra members, or interaction between orchestra and audience. For this reason, this study focuses on explaining the concept of orchestral musician (“orkestracı”) as the result of the ethnographic research conducted with members of the Istanbul State Symphony Orchestra. Becoming an orchestral musician has been considered here as a particular process and its affecting factors have been explained in a descriptive analysis.
Keywords: Classical music, symphony orchestra, becoming an orchestral musician, interaction, etnomusicology.