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Māhour for Cello and Live electronics


The words “composition”, “performance” and “improvisation”, which are so well defined in the Western art music context, are rather unsuitable for Iranian classical music. The word “improvisation” in fact was never used until the twentieth century, when the Western concept was introduced in Iran. Despite scholars determining improvisation as the basis for Iranian music, it has been argued that it more a concept of “creative performance” which lies at its heart. This form of creativity sees no distinction between a performer and composer, and this is heavily grounded in the music tradition of Iranian Dastgāh. With a foundation of rigorous traditions and history, performers find themselves in a space and system which encourages spontaneous playing and naturally cultivates “creative performance.”


Dastgāh-e Māhour is one of 12 dastgāhs within the tradition, each of which encompass their own modal system and melodic characters. This performance is Roxanna's interpretation of Māhour, merged with her and Marat Ingeldeev’s practice of free improvisation and live electronics.

Presented at Music and Intercultural Practice Symposium, University of Hull 2021

Supported by Institute of Sound Recording, University of Surrey

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