Tuesday, August 25, 2015

National Iranian Radio & Television Chamber Orchestra in Persepolis, 1968

A rare photo of Nartonal Iranian Radio & Television Chamber Orchestra (a.k.a "NIRT) in a concert at Shiraz Art Festival, Persepolis, 1968. 

The orchestra in this event was conducted by the Persian-Armenian musician VAHE KHOJAIAN who was a graduate of Tehran Conservatory of Music.
The critics were not so kind to this concert and states NIRT Chamber Orchestra needs more time to perform in the beginning of such an International festival.
The orchestra later became quite successful and performed in various European festivals as well. A gramophone record is also available by NIRT Chamber Orchestra, conducted by the guest Bulgarian conductor Emil Tchakarov. The LP released in 1978 by EMI.

Sunday, August 9, 2015

A Monster called Dutch Pancake!

I have always enjoyed Dutch pancakes; little sweat, tasty, so nice to have it in the afternon with a little honey. But yesterday something very exceptional happened in the center of Amsterdam.
Look at the photo! It was served in a cafe in Leidseplein. I did not like that. So big + a lot of cream... not tasty either.
I always knew that we should not go to cafes or resturants in very crowded areas such as Central Station district, Dam or Leideseplein but it was an advice by an American friend who was vsiting Amsterdam for few days.
Anyway stick on the small local cafes for a nice Dutch pancake! Just my advice! :)

Friday, August 7, 2015

The Dog and the Harmonica Player...

The man was playing harmonica and his dog was helping him to collection money.
The dog's inocent face had a great effect on people to pay their own share. Many also were taking photo with the dog and kissed him/her.
Dogs, the best friends...

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Persian Postage Stamps from ca. 1850 (Qajar Era)

Today I found these Persian postage stamps in a market in Berlin. They belong to Qajar dynasty which was in power in Persia (Iran) in 18th and 19th century.
I am not 100% sure but strongly believe the king which has been painted on the stamp is NASER AL-DIN SHAH (or Nassereddin Shah) who was the king of Persia since 1831 to 1896.

On the stamp "POSTES PERSANES" is mentioned which is French for "Persian Post". It shows on that time French was a kind of International language, instead of English.

Perse | | Persa | Perzië Perzische Postzegels | Briefmake aus Persien (Iran)
伊朗 - 波斯 - 邮票 | בול דואר - איראן - ממלכת פרס
Irán - Persa - Sello postal - Iraní
 ایرانی - طابع بريد بلاد فارس/ إيران Pul (posta) - İran - Pers İmparatorluğu
イラン - ペルシア - 切手
تمبرهای ایران از زمان ناصرالدین شاه قاجار

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Photo Gallery: Amsterdam Gay Pride 2015

Dutch People Are Cute and Funny!

Huge crowd by the river Amstel @ Amsterdam Gay Pride 2015:

 This year, Dutch Ministry of Defense also had a boat in the pride :)

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Netanyahu's Persian Twitter is Full of Mistakes!

Last week in New York Times I read Israeli Prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu has launched a Persian-language twitter. 
It's good and hopefully an effective way to communicate with Iran's people but I am quite surprized why the content of his Persian twitts is full of mistake?!
Two of them have been shown in the above screenshot. The mistakes are both grammaer and spelling. 
Should I believe that there is no Persian-speaker to edit the posts for him?! 

New York Times piece:

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Morgenland Festival | Bimhuis | Amsterdam | July 2015 :: Photo Gallery

This year (2015) the German-based Morgenland Festival presented its programs in Amsterdam as well. The concerts took place at Bimhuis for three nights (16-17-18 July) and specially first and third night's events were warmly received by the audience.
But I missed Middle Eastern music in this festival which is going to be focused on Middle Eastern music! I will explay more later.

KAYHAN KALHOR's performance was the most authenic part of the festival. This legendary maestro of Persian music and kamancheh recently has performed a lot of concerts in the Netherlands; one of the latest ones was the project "BACH IN PERSIA" with Dutch Wind Ensemble (NBE).

Cemil Qoçgiri played tanbur at the festival. I think not enough time was given to him to present his work. He was born in Germany and becauase of his name I think he has Turkish background. I could hear from the sound of his instrument that he is grown up outside the Middle East.

In the second night of the festival, the jazz pianist from Azerbaijan Salman Gambarov and his German colleague Florian Weber performed an entertaining program. The begining was quite long and then at the end they tried to turn their pianistic dialogue to a kind of commedy show which was intresting for the audience.
I was so eager to hear some melodies from the beautiful music of Azerbaijan by Gambarov but did not perform anything related to his homeland. Actually in my opinion at least 80% of the festival content was in the framework of improvised jazz music, not to the music of the Middle East and it was a bit disappointing for me because the title of the festival is Morgenland.
It seems most of the musicians at the festical were just interested to do strange things instead of transfering the real essence of music to the people.

KINAN AZMEH, a briliant musician from Syria. He was really the star of the festival. The skilful clarinestist was playing with lots of emotion. On Youtube I also find a piece that Kinan is performing with Morgenland Chamber Orchestra in Germany. Unfortunately the name of the composer is not mentioned there but anyway it's magical piece and performance. You may watch it HERE.

A huge part of the festival had been given to AYNUR. I really did not like her voice. She was screaming a lot and even once I had to use my hands to cover my ears! Anyway it seems she is the festival organizers' favorite!

IBRAHIM KEIVO was the most energic part of the festival. The Syrian singer had a powerful charecter and also sense of humor. He was singing and dancing with lots of emotions and created a fantastic communication with the audience. I heard from Syrian friends that Ibrahim Keivo is very popular in Syria.
A few minuets of his performance at Bimhuis can be seen in the below video: