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Ayse Gurel: Why Google honours her today

Described as an 'outstanding composer', Turkish poet, actress and song-writer Aysel Gurel would have been 89 today.

Ayse Gurel

Described as an "outstanding composer", Turkish poet, actress and song-writer Aysel Gurel would have been 89 on February 7. 

In her honour, Google is changing its logo in Turkey to a doodle, or illustration of her.

Aysel Gurel dominated the Turkish pop scene and influenced legendary singers such as Sezen Aksu, Sertab Erener, and Tarkan. Gure authored dozens of songs, and most of them spoke about love. 

Until today her songs continue to be popular, with new renditions still being produced. 

This is her story: 

A poet and an actress 

  • Aysel Gurel was born in 1929, in Sraykoy in the Denizli Province of Turkey. She graduated from Istanbul University, and earned a degree in literature.
  • Gurel was the mother of the Turkish actresses Mujde Ar and Mehtap Ar.
  • Throughout her life, she performed as an actress, drama player and she was a Turkologist, an expert in languages, history and the culture of the Turkic people, she was also a recognised composer. 
  • Her lyrics were performed by media stars and her lyrics were very much in demand.
  • But she was not left behind the scenes; she was also recognised for her red glasses, pink wigs and outstanding outfits. Gurel also participated in some movies and performed for a Pepsi add. 
  • Today Google captures her presence, noting that "her joy is hard to contain on the screen".
  • Gurel also made a mark as a strong feminist and an animal rights activist. 
  • She died after a battle with lung cancer on February 17, 2008, in Istanbul. Until today, she is revered as an icon in the country. 

[Translation: Happy Birthday Aysel Gurel, you are in our memories.]


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