Between the sixteenth and ninteenth centuries, classical Persian music was forbidden in Iran. When the edict was lifted in the mid-1800s, Ali Akbar Farâhâni was charged with re-creating the lost music; his two sons carried on his responsibility, helping to revive the music of Persia and training younger musicians. Ostad Mortezâ Khân Neydâvoud was the eventual inheritor of their work, and he, in fact, carried the torch even further, bringing modern musical elements to the tradition and ushering in an era during which women could perform. What's perhaps more surprising — at least to Westerners — is that Ostad Neydâvoud was Jewish. How marvelous is the world that an Iranian Jew helped modernize Persian music? Tonight at 8 p.m. at the Ethical Society of St. Louis (9001 Clayton Road, Richmond Heights; 314-721-6556 or www.gitana-inc.org), his life and work are celebrated with the concert Faces of Love from Iran: We Are God's Music. Master of the ney (reed flute) Dr. Hossein Omoumi and his ensemble (which includes avant-garde violist Eyvind Kang) perform the music of Ostad Neydâvoud. Fatemeh Keshavarz joins the group to recite the poetry of Rumi as well. Tickets are $30 to $45.
Sat., Oct. 25, 2008