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Fajr Theater Festival to Honor Ali Rafiee

Fajr Theater Festival  to Honor Ali Rafiee  Fajr Theater Festival  to Honor Ali Rafiee

Veteran theater director Ali Rafiee will be honored at the closing ceremony of the 35th Fajr International Theater Festival on January 31.

He will be commended for a lifetime of artistic achievements in the field of performing arts at Tehran’s Vahdat Hall, Honaronline reported.

Rafiee, 78, is a theater and cinema director and stage designer. He received his bachelor and master’s degree in sociology from Sorbonne University and also has a PhD in theater from the same university.

He began his career in acting and directing in France and continued the same after returning to Iran in the early 1970s. On his return, he was assigned as the director of City Theater Complex and Faculty of Dramatic Arts (now known as Tehran University of Art). He started teaching theater at the Faculty of Fine Arts, University of Tehran.

Rafiee has made two films and staged over 10 plays including ‘Antigone’ written by the ancient Greek tragedian Sophocles, ‘Crime and Punishment’ by Russian author Fyodor Dostoyevsky, ‘Blood Wedding’ by Spanish poet and playwright Federico Garcia Lorca and ‘Romeo and Juliet’ by English playwright and poet William Shakespeare.

The last play Rafiee directed was ‘Memories and Nightmares of a Clothes Keeper of Mirza Taghi Khan,’ staged at Vahdat Hall in November 2015. The play on the story of Amir Kabir (1807-1852), chief minister to Naser al-Din Shah Qajar (king of Persia), was warmly welcomed by theater fans.

Special set designs and lighting are among the characteristics of his works. In his last play, he used an aqua setting on stage with 4,500 liters of water, giving a unique feature to the play.

Rafiee is currently rehearsing with 38 actors to stage ‘The Kitchen’, a play written by British dramatist Arnold Wesker in 1950, in April at Iranshahr Theater in Tehran.

The 35th edition of the theater festival is underway in Tehran and seven other provincial centers with performances by local and international groups.

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