Masters of Persian Classical Music
By MortazaviBlog on Feb 24, 2005
If you have an ear or want to develop one for music outside of the Western tradition and you live in the San Francisco Bay Area, you should make an attempt to attend this CalPerformance in the Zellerbach Auditorium: Masters of Persian Classical Music. I'll definitely be trying to get some tickets myself. (Listen to a piece from Kalhor posted on the BBC.)
If you live in the Cleveland area, it looks like Shajarian, Kalhor and Alizadeh will also be performing in the Cleveland Museum of Art, later in March. Shajarian's son is the forth musician, on tombak (drum), and he is also following in his father's footsteps in avaz (voice).
I attended their concert in Stanford a couple of years ago and it was, of course, quite amazing. In the last 10 years, I've heard Sajarian, Kalhor and Alizadeh twice, and if I have the opportunity and tickets are there, I'd like to hear this group perform live again this Sunday.
Persian classical music is not for everyone. One must initiate onself to it, and the effort can always prove worthy. At least, Yo-Yo Ma seems to have experienced it as such. (Listen to the pieces posted on this NPR review of Yo-Yo Ma's Silk Road Project, for example.)
In closing, I should add that Persian classical music has been seeing a tremendous revival in the last 25 years in Iran. Today, there are many really good performers and masters developing and transmitting classical Persian music. Many of those involved in avaz (voice, singing) have been students of Shajarian.