Art And Culture

Mesmerized by Maestro's Magnificence

Mesmerized by Maestro's Magnificence Mesmerized by Maestro's Magnificence

Music world's grandmaster Shahram Nazeri finally held his long-awaited concert on Tuesday night in the ministry of interior's hall.

The concert hall saw one of its most crowded nights packed with enthusiastic fans. Nazeri dedicated the concert to the late Mohamadreza Lotfi, a Persian classical musician renowned for his mastery of the tar and setar.

Accompanied by Mawlawi ensemble, Nazeri rendered Kurdish and Persian songs from poems of Mawlawi (Rumi), a 13th-century Persian poet, jurist, theologian and Sufi mystic, and Mehdi Akhawan-Sales, a prominent Iranian poet and one of the pioneers of 'free verse' (new style poetry) in Persian language.

At a part of the concert, fulfilling his promise given less than a month ago, Master Nazeri sang a popular poem by the late Simin Behbahani, titled 'My Country, I Will Build You Again', to a round of applause from the enthralled audience. He played his own setar for the rendition. He had also sung it at Behbahani's funeral three weeks ago, promising to friends and fans to perform it again at his concert. Behbahani was a celebrated poet and women’s rights advocate. Known as Iran’s lady of 'ghazal' (a traditional poetic form), she had two nominations for the Nobel Prize in literature.

The grandmaster also elaborated on the 'Rumi Symphony' album prepared by his son, Hafiz, together with an orchestra of all-star foreign classical musicians. This is the first album produced by Sony Classics in the Middle East. The album is expected to be locally released in the near future.

No Support

Earlier at a press conference, Nazeri, the undisputed icon of Persian and Kurdish traditional music, had criticized the authorities for not supporting musicians. "Although government expresses support of art and artists and has made promises to remove obstacles, it seems these words have no meaning in practice. The problem is not only with the present situation. During the past 30 years, many different organizations and mafia in music have disturbed me, but I have remained silent and will keep working with the same attitude," he had said.

Global Figure

The singer-composer has an international face too. The New York Times has dubbed him the “Persian Nightingale” and the Christian Science Monitor has called him “Iran’s Pavarotti”. Recently he was awarded the Chevalier des Arts et Lettres medal by the government of France for his lifetime achievements in Iranian traditional music. Also Asia Society has awarded him the Lifetime Cultural Heritage Award.

Nazeri has held several concerts around the world. His performances have garnered critical acclaim and won him awards at music festivals across the globe.

Five years after his last album, the maestro of traditional music has prepared his new album 'Kurdis Book of Kings 2' (Shahnameh Kordi 2) which is to be distributed soon.

At the moment, he is working on an album using the poems of Nima Yushij, considered as the father of modern Persian poetry.