This program features three of the most important figures in classical Persian music touring together for the first time: Iran's greatest vocalist Mohammad Reza Shajarian, Hossein Alizadeh (tar, lute) and Kayhan Kalhor (kamancheh, spike fiddle). They will be accompanied by Homayoun Shajarian on tombak and vocals. Their program features new works drawing on the rich heritage of Persian classical music and ancient Sufi and contemporary poetry. is the official websponsor of the tour.

Tour dates

January 26, 2001 8pm
Toronto, Canada
Toronto Centre for the Arts
5040 Yonge Street (North York Centre)
Ticketmaster: 416-870-8000.
Info: 416-536-4769

January 28, 2001 8pm
Vancouver, Canada
Centennial Theater
2300 Lonsdale Ave., North Vancouver, BC
Info: 604-904-8866 Toll Free: 1-877-980-8866

January 31, 2001 7:30pm
San Diego, CA
Mandeville Auditorium/UCSD
Zaman Productions (619) 688-0688
Persian Cultural Center (858) 653-0336

February 3, 2001 8pm
Los Angeles, CA
Bovard Auditorium/USC
Tickets/Info: (310) 470-5177

Sunday, February 4, 2001 8pm
Santa Barbara, CA
UCSB Campbell Hall
Tickets/Info: 805-893-3535

Friday February 9, 2001 8pm
Portland, OR
Scottish Rite Center at the Scottish Rite Center
709 SW 15th
Tickets/Info: 503/297-6816

Saturday February 10, 2001 8pm
Berkeley, CA
Zellerbach Theater
UC Berkeley
Tickets/Info: 510-642-9988

February 11, 2001 2:30pm
Stanford, CA
Dinkelspiel Auditorium
Stanford University
Tickets/Info: 650-723-2551 & 650-725-ARTS

February 18, 2001
Atlanta, GA
Post Theater at the Lovett School
Tickets/Info: 770-205-8051

24 February 8pm
New York, NY
Town Hall
123 W. 43rd Street
Tickets/Info: 212-545-7536

February 25, 2001 8pm
Washington, DC
Lisner Auditorium
George Washington University
The corner of 21st and H Streets
Tickets/Info: 703-256-5831 or (202) 994-1500

February 28, 2001, 7:30pm
Cleveland, OH
Cleveland Museum of Art
Tickets/Info: 1-888-CMA-0033 or 216-421-7350

March 2, 2001
Durham, NC
Reynolds Theater
Duke University
Tickets/Info: 919-684-4444

March 4, 2001
Boston, MA
Sanders Theater
45 Quincy Street, Cambridge
Free parking in the Broadway Garage
Tickets/Info: 617-876-4275

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About the artists

Mohammad Reza Shajarian - Vocalist

Mohammad Reza Shajarian, the undisputed master of Persian traditional (classical) singing, is regarded as a national treasure by both musicians and music lovers. He is perhaps Iran1s most diverse and prolific singer of all time and has a huge repertory of recorded works. In 1999 UNESCO in France presented him with the prestigious Picasso Award, one of Europe1s highest honors, and in 2000 the Ministry of Culture in Iran declared him the best classical vocalist since the Revolution. In the music of Iran, traditional singing is one of the most difficult arts to master. Shajarian is widely considered the embodiment of the perfect singer and a major source of inspiration to other musicians. Born in 1940 in the city of Mash'had in northeastern Iran, Shajarian studied singing at the early age of five under the supervision of his father, and at the age of twelve he began studying the traditional classical repertoire known as the radif. He studied with the great masters Esmaeel Mehrtash and Ahmad Ebadi, and learned the vocal styles of singers from previous generations, including Reza-Gholi Mirza Zelli, Ghamar-ol Molouk Vaziri, Eghbal-Soltan Azar, and Taj Esfahani. He started playing the santur under the instruction of Jalal Akhbari in order to better understand and perform the traditional repertoire, and in 1960 he became the pupil of Faramarz Payvar. Shajarian was deeply inspired by the late master vocalist Gholam Hossein Banan. He studied under the guidance of master Abdollah Davami, from whom he learned the most ancient tasnifs (songs). Davami also passed on to Shajarian his own interpretation of the radif. Shajarian started his singing career in 1959 at Radio Khorasan, rising to prominence in the 1960s with his distinct style of singing, at once technically flawless, powerful, and intensely emotional. Since then, he has had an illustrious career that includes teaching at Tehran University's Department of Fine Arts (among other places), working at National Radio and Television, researching Iranian music, and making numerous important recordings. He performs regularly in Iran and throughout the world, including recent concerts at New York1s Avery Fisher Hall, London1s Queen Elizabeth Hall, and Berlin1s Passionskirche. To top

Hossein Alizadeh - Tar

Hossein Alizadeh was born in Tehran, Iran, in 1951. After graduating from the Music Conservatory, he entered the School of Music of the University of Tehran in 1975 where he received his bachelor's degree in composition and performance. During the same period he studied with various masters of Traditional Persian Music such as Houshang Zarif, Ali Akbar Shahnazi, Nur Ali Borumand, Mahmood Karimi, and Abdollah Davami. It is from these masters that he learned the radif of Persian classical music. Alizadeh was awarded a position with the National Orchestra of Iran and later became the conductor and soloist of the Iranian National Orchestra of Radio and Television. He founded the Aref Ensemble and performed with the Shayda Ensemble, both dedicated to the promotion and advancement of Persian classical music. Alizadeh participated in the orchestra of the famous Bejart Ballet Company in a performance of Gulistan, a ballet by Maurice Bejart. In the early 1980's, he further expanded his formal education by studying composition and musicology at the University of Berlin. He has composed many works of traditional and neo-classical Persian music including Ney Nava and Song of Compassion and has written and published a number of etudes for tar. In addition, he has recorded the entire body of the radif based on the interpretation of Mirza Abdullah. He has performed extensively throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia and has appeared on many radio and television programs around the world. He taught at the University of Tehran, The Tehran Music Conservatory and in 1994, he was visiting professor at UCLA. To top

Kayhan Kalhor - kamancheh

Kayhan Kalhor was born in Tehran in 1963. At the age of seven, he began his music studies under Master Ahmad Mohajer. A child prodigy on the kamancheh, he was invited at the age of thirteen to work in the National Orchestra of Radio and Television of Iran, where he performed for five years. During this period he was given the National Music Award two years in a row. At seventeen, Kalhor began working with the Shayda Ensemble of the Chavosh Cultural Center, the most prestigious organization for arts at the time. While performing with Shayda, he continued his studies of Persian classical repertoire (the radif) with different masters. In addition, he spent much time in different regions of Iran, including Khorasan in the northeast and Kurdistan in the west, and absorbed regional repertoires and styles. In 1978 Kalhor went to Rome to study Western classical music at the Santa Sicilia School of Music and continued his studies in the 1980s at Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada, where he received a degree in music. He has composed works for Iran's most renowned vocalists, including M.R. Shajarian and Shahram Nazeri, and he has performed with Iran's greatest masters, including Faramarz Payvar and Hossein Alizadeh. In 1991 he co-founded Dastan, the renowned Persian classical music ensemble, and in 1997 he formed the group Ghazal, which features the collaborative improvisations of Kalhor and the Indian sitar player Shujaat Husain Khan. His most recent commissions include traditional Persian works written for the Kronos Quartet, with whom he performed and recorded in 1999, and for Yo Yo Ma1s 3Silk Road Project,2 which will embark on a worldwide tour in 2001. Kalhor also continues to perform in solo kamancheh concerts around the world, including most recently at Washington1s Smithsonian Institute and London1s Royal Albert Hall. To top

Homayoun Shajarian - tombak & vocals

Homayoun Shajarian, born in 1975, is the son of the master vocalist M.R. Shajarian. He began playing tombak when he was five years old. At the age of six he began studying under the instruction of Ostad (Master) Nasser Farhangfar and with Jamshid Mohebbi, and later attended the School of Art in Tehran. In addition to tombak, Homayoun plays the kamancheh, viola and piano and studies the vocal tradition with his father. Since 1991 he has played in many ensembles accompanying his father on tombak in Europe, Iran and the U.S. To top