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Music of Herat

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🎵 September 10, 2023 - Music of Herat: Naria Nour, Nasim Khoshnawaz, and Roots Revival Ensemble

Roots Revival Series 3: Afghanistan celebrates the vibrant music and cultural diversity of Afghanistan. This 3rd series is a collaboration between Roots Revival, SHIFT and the Odeon Theater. The experimental project, which combines tradition and innovation, takes up four music genres from Afghanistan. Afghan guest musicians from all over the world will join the Roots Revival Ensemble in Vienna and develop unique interpretations of four Afghan music genres. An incomparable musical performance awaits you!

Music from Herat: The city of Herat in western Afghanistan is known for its rich cultural and musical heritage. Herati music has deep roots in Afghan and Persian musical traditions, combining elements of both, as well as the musical traditions of ethnic groups such as the Pashtun, Tajik and Hazara. It has a unique character, characterized by melodic complexity, artful rhythms and poetic lyrics. Commonly used instruments in Herati music include the rubab, the tabla, the harmonium, and sometimes the sarod. In Herati music, oral folk songs or poems are referred to as "chaharbaiti" or quatrains and "dubaiti" or couplets. These lyrical compositions possess a unique rhythmic quality that allows free expression. They are sung in Dari, the official language of Afghanistan.

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About the project:
A massive change has taken place in the Afghan cultural scene since the Taliban returned to Afghanistan. Making music is forbidden, has even become life-threatening in a country that boasts an extraordinary musical culture. The world is witnessing yet another mass exodus of Afghans. Today, Afghan musicians are only allowed to play in exile. After the first year of regime change, most waves of international support and empathy for Afghanistan have subsided. The challenges in the lives of Afghans and Afghan artists have increased enormously, both inside and outside the country. With the project "Roots Revival Series: Afghanistan" we want to draw attention to the diversity and richness of Afghan music and thereby support some of the Afghan musicians.

Naria Nour (Iran, vocals) 
is an Afghan singer and music researcher from Iran who combines her passion for music with an exceptional commitment to the preservation of Afghan melodies. After completing her studies in English literature at Sabzevar University, she delved deeper into the intricacies of the Iranian chant "Radif". Naria conducted extensive research into Afghan music, particularly studying and interpreting the repertoire of female musicians from Herat who performed before the Taliban first came to power in Afghanistan. In recent years, Naria has delighted audiences with various renditions of songs from Herat, performing alongside the acclaimed Khoshnawaz Band.

Farough Rahmani (Iran, Rubab)
is a renowned Rubab player from Iran. In 2009, he began his musical journey, devoting himself intensively to playing Balochistan-style rabab under the tutelage of respected mentors such as Abolqasem Hosseininejad, Vahid Seyedzadeh and Amir Khosro Siahani. Inspired by the musical tradition of Herat, Farough followed in the footsteps of the veteran Gholam Amini and the respected Nasim Khoshnawaz, while indirectly absorbing the refined techniques of Ustad Homayoun Sakhi, a true master of rabab. With a fusion of influences, Farough Rahmani has crafted a captivating sound of his own, showcasing his talent and dedication to this traditional instrument.

Mehdi Aminian (Iran/Vienna, Ney, Setar, vocals)
Mehdi's musical beginnings in Persian music, especially Mehdi Aminian (Iran/Vienna, Ney, Setar, vocals). Mehdi's musical beginnings in Persian music, especially ney, go back to his youth, which he spent in Iran. He left his country at the age of 16 and, as he realized in retrospect, had a special interest in experimenting with ancient Persian music. Since his youth he lived in different countries of Europe and Southeast Asia. As a result of this and his fascination with Sufi literature and poetry, as well as his involvement in a wide variety of musical projects, Mehdi Aminian was able to develop a unique artistic style that goes far beyond well-known genres. In the last ten years he has devoted himself to the development and implementation of international music and research projects within the association he founded, "Roots Revival", with the aim of creating a dialogue between different musical traditions around the world.

Helene Glüxam (Vienna, double bass)

plays in a wide variety of formations, from pop/rock to jazz and classical. For several years she has been increasingly involved with the wide field of world music. Among other things, she is a member of the Iranian-Kurdish world/jazz ensemble Kurdophone, which won the Creole Global Contest Berlin in 2019. She is also a member of the "Webern Chamber Philharmonic Orchestra" and is currently working on her first solo program.

David Six (piano) , pianist and composer,

studied piano, improvisation and classical Indian music in Linz, Vienna, Berlin and New Delhi. His solo piano releases have received international awards. David Six shows himself to be an expert in creating wide spaces that give every single note, every melody and every sonic experiment far from any intellectualism a deeper validity. Working with the chamber music ensemble Stargaze and his project Dance with the Ghosts is currently at the center of his work.

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