Ali Rahbari & Recording Iranian Symphonic Compositions

alexander-rahbari-ali

by: Sadjad Pourghanad & Mahboube Khalvai


In the few days prior to the New Iranian year (March 2015), the news of the revival of Tehran Symphony Orchestra under Ali (Alexander) Rahbari’s conductorship was announced. Ali Rahbari, who served as assistant to Herbert von Karajan in Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra at a very young age, was also invited to conduct Tehran Symphony Orchestra in 2005; however, the election of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s government put an end to his collaboration with this Orchestra. Recently, it was announced that Rahbari is invited to conduct an orchestra in the U.S.
Ali Rahbari is the most prolific Iranian conductor throughout the world. Writing about the activities of such a renowned Iranian musician on this international scale, tends to become redundant as much is written and said about him.
It does not go amiss to review his years at the National Conservatory of Music in Iran in order to contextualize his years as a young ambitious musician though. Ali Rahbari is a graduate of National Conservatory of Music where he also served as Principal (simultaneously with holding the same position at the Higher Conservatory of Music) during his years prior to immigration.
One of the major characteristics of musicians who have studied at the National Conservatory of Music while Hossein Dehlavi was the Principal is special attention to the Iranian music. Contrary to the Higher Conservatory of Music which solely focused on understanding and performing the Western Classical music with its extensive repertoire, the National Conservatory of Music directed close attention to the Iranian instrument and Iranian music.
Most of the graduates from the National Conservatory of Music are familiar with playing one or two Iranian instruments besides their main instrument. Ali Rahbari is not an exception; he plays tonbak and santour as well and has a comprehensive knowledge of the Iranian music.
In addition to engendering nationalist feelings, engagement with the Iranian music leads to bonding with the new repertoire of the classical music especially non-Western works; a qualification which some of the graduates of the Higher Conservatory of Music and those of many conservatories throughout the world lack. As a matter of fact, due to rehearsing and performing works by prominent classical musicians for too many hours, students make a fetish of them and consider composing as an unforgivable mistake and as disrespect for the great composers while they lack the ability to criticize and understand new realities of composing.
At the National Conservatory of Music and at the instruction of the Principal, Hossein Dehlavi, the students were encouraged and required to take courage and compose to the best of their capabilities. No carelessness in composing was accepted and works must have been defensible.
Ali Rahbari studied violin in the National Conservatory of Music but was attracted to conducting and composing very soon. As a result of this, he composed works, such as “Persian Blood on Sol”, a concerto (concertino) for violin “Noheh Khan”, Half Moon, Persian Ballet to name but a few, which are among the most valuable Iranian symphonic compositions.
During his many years of conducting various symphony orchestras all over the world, Ali Rahbari seldom stand the chance of conducting works by Iranian composers including him. The following, however, is the list of Iranian symphonic creations recorded under Ali Rahbari’s baton:
Persian Symphonic Manzoumeh (Symphonic Poems from Persia): the Nuremberg Symphony Orchestra was commissioned by the pre-Revolution Iranian government to record this album. The album includes compositions by Hossein Dehlavi (1927), Ahmad Pejman (1937), Houshang Ostovar (1927), Mohammad Taghi Masoudieh (1927-1998), Aminoullah (André) Hossein (1905-1983) and Ali Rahbari.
* Manzoumeh: a long narrative poem
Bizhan and Manizheh for String Orchestra by Hossein Dehlavi: the album was recorded in Austria prior to the 1979 Islamic Revolution and was produced in Iran along with another work, composed and conducted, by Dehlavi entitled “Shour Afarin.”
Mani and Mana Opera by Hossein Dehlavi: Ali Rahbari sponsored the recording of the musical parts by Slovak Symphony Orchestra in Bratislava; however, the vocal parts are still outstanding (due to the ban on solo performances by women vocalists in Iran); hence, the album still awaiting its release.
Iraneh Khanom by Peyman Soltani (1971): the album was recorded by Slovak Symphony Orchestra in Bratislava. It is currently being mixed.
Persian Mysticism around G by Ali Rahbari: the album, which was recorded prior to the 1979 Islamic Revolution, was recently issued in CD format (being originally produced in gramophone format). The CD version includes some new pieces.
Mirage by Ahmad Pejman: this piece which was part of “Taksavare Eshq” album is no longer available.

Post a Comment

Required fields are marked *
*
*
Your email is never shared.

Iranian Contradictions: Iranian Chords

Finding a way to harmonize the Iranian music has been the subject of controversy among Iranian musicians for a long time. Some believe in the creation of harmonies for Iranian music based on a method which is similar to the tierce harmony; while others have either selected or invented some other methods. There are also some musicians who do not basically agree with the harmonization of the Iranian music.

Principles of Violin Playing (IX)

4.3.1. To practice playing of doubles of notes involving two different fingers, each note is played at separate bows with slow tempo, each note is played perfectly regarding its bass and tenor sounds and then the considered double is played at another bow while considering the resulted sound of the double.

From Past Days…

harmonytalk-auteur

HarmonyTalk Celebrates 11th Anniversary

April 6 marks the anniversary of launching HarmonyTalk.com. Back in 2004, HarmonyTalk was rather a blog dedicated to music. Gradually, however, it found its way to becoming a more sophisticated journal with an intensive but not exclusive concentration on classical music.

xenakis-polytopes-persepolis-03

Iannis Xenakis’ Persephassa

Shiraz Arts Festival which was held in Shiraz from 1967 to 1977 featured many contemporary renowned artists who were commissioned by the Iranian royalty to compose or create works of art for performance in the arts festival. Iannis Xenakis (1922-2001) participated in Shiraz Arts Festival three times in 1968, 1969 and 1971. The Greek-French composer,…
Read More »

tehran-flute-choir

Tehran Flute Choir Established

Tehran Flute Choir was established in 1394 (late 2015) by Firouzeh Navai. Tehran Flute Choir, Iran’s first largest flute choir, recruited its members mostly from young talented flutists of Iranian Flute Association. Featuring piccolo, flute, alto flute and bass flute, Tehran Flute Choir, directed by Firouzeh Navai, premiered under the batons of Saeed Taghadosi on January 7-8, 2016 at Roudaki Hall in Tehran.

rooholah-khaleghi-rouhollah-rouholah-khaleghy1

From the Last Instrumentalist to the First Composer (I)

Music as an art has its own special history; emergence of a singer, of an instrumentalist and then the emergence of the strong character of a composer covers three significant phases of the art of music. With the emergence of composer which was simultaneous with the emergence of the language of music, this art managed to offer a domain for criticism for its composer; a procedure which led to a magnificent variety and evolution in musical production. Even though the conflicts between singers and instrumentalists have not met their end in the Iranian society and while singers can achieve high, instrumentalists have yet to play behind curtains . In a special era, with the efforts of musicians such as Ali Naghi Vaziri (1887-1979) and Rouhollah Khaleghi (1906-1965), glimmers of a composing era started to glow bearing fruit in Khaleghi’s achievement as Iran’s first professional composer. Khaleghi made his reputation as a composer while Vaziri deserved to pioneer this path. By then Vaziri was well-known as a Tar player.

National-Instruments-Orchestra

A Promising Concert by National Instruments Orchestra

The National Instruments Orchestra of Iran performed its first concert amid much hope and anxiety on July 18, 2015. The Orchestra is founded by Roudaki Cultural and Arts Foundation which is a semi-private foundation in Iran. The Arts Director for the National Instruments Orchestra of Iran is cand the Orchestra Executive Director is Sadjad Pourghand.

Hossein hosein Dehlavi

Hossein Dehlavi: the Composer

With Dehlavi it is not all about fame but recognition. Hossein Dehlavi is not a popular musician (like pop singers) whom everybody might know when he is walking on streets of Tehran; however, he is recognized by both amateur and distinguished musicians of the country.

photo_2017-01-01_11-54-07

Henry Cowell: “Persian Set”

Persian Set: Four Movements for chamber orchestra: Moderato; Allegretto; Lento; Rondo

Henry Cowell, one of the most innovative American composers of the 20th century, was born in 1897. Cowell and his wife visited Iran in 1956 and stayed there the whole winter, upon the invitation by the Iranian Royal Family, when he composed his album “Persian Set” in four movements for chamber orchestra. His composition is expressive of the characteristic quality of the Persian or the Iranian music.

sdf3_n

Iranian Contradictions: Iranian Chords

Finding a way to harmonize the Iranian music has been the subject of controversy among Iranian musicians for a long time. Some believe in the creation of harmonies for Iranian music based on a method which is similar to the tierce harmony; while others have either selected or invented some other methods. There are also some musicians who do not basically agree with the harmonization of the Iranian music.

halate-sahih

Principles of Violin Playing (III)

Violin players should always pay attention to the proper position of the left thumb and other points related to it and to its joining point to the palm.

logo-jashnvareie-paigah-haie-mousighi-dar-internet

The 4th Iranian Festival of Music Websites and Weblogs

The 4th Iranian Festival of Music Websites and Weblogs was held in Niavaran Cultural Center, in Tehran, Iran on Feb. 28th, 2015. The initiator of the festival was Sajjad Pourghanad, Iranian music writer, researcher, founder of the festival and Persian setar and tar player.