Voices from the East

Mohsen Namjoo vocals and setar
Sahand Sahebdivani narrator

If you flee your homeland, can you pack up your stories and take them with you? Soloists Mohsen Namjoo and Sahand Sahebdivani give their eager response to this question in this extraordinary NBE performance. Mohsen Namjoo is known as Iran’s answer to Bob Dylan: his critical songs awakened so much resistance that he felt compelled to flee his homeland to America. Storyteller Sahand brings the stories to life that his parents left behind in Iran as political refugees: universal stories about abandoning and being abandoned. Together with these two soloists, the NBE puts on a show about war and flight, but also about hope for a new world. The NBE plays music by the young Iranian composer Kaveh Vares.

Mohsen Namjoo

Mohsen Namjoo is one of Iran’s most controversial contemporary singer/songwriters, praised as “Iran’s Bob Dylan” by the New York Times. Namjoo has been unable to return to Iran since 2009 when he was sentenced to five years’ imprisonment for including verses from the Koran in one of his songs. Mohsen Namjoo has performed in the US, Canada, England, France, Italy and Germany. In 2007 he gave his first concert outside of Iran during the International Film Festival in Rotterdam! The international press call him a “Maverick” and “Avant Garde” due to his capacity to effortlessly fuse Persian traditional and folk music with jazz, rock and blues, and the unconventional use of his voice as an instrument. The lyrics to his songs are – just like his music – innovative and unique, a combination of Persian classical poems from poets such as Hafez, Rumi and Saadi and his own lyrics and poetry.

Mohsen Namjoo has amassed a great number of fans and critics both in Iran and abroad. He is a visionary artist who not only speaks for contemporary youth, but touches their souls. He seamlessly blends the classical with the modern and the traditional with the contemporary. Mohsen Namjoo is a musical maverick, a non-conformist who not only takes on the ancient traditions in Persian music, but also has his own approach to composition, style and sound.

Sahand Sahebdivani

Sahand Sahebdivani is a writer, storyteller and musician. At the age of three, he fled his native Iran with his parents. In Amsterdam, his father brought Iran back to life through stories of ancient heroes and wise kings, but also about his grandmother and the street where he grew up. Sahand was infected by the storytelling virus and today travels through the Netherlands to share his stories.

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when to see it
  • Thu 29 Sep 2016 20:30 Amsterdam Podium Mozaïek Sold out
  • Fri 30 Sep 2016 20:15 Haarlem Philharmonie
  • Sat 01 Oct 2016 20:15 Den Haag Nieuwe Kerk Sold out
  • Sun 02 Oct 2016 15:00 Helmond Theater Speelhuis
  • Wed 05 Oct 2016 20:15 Wageningen Junushoff
  • Thu 06 Oct 2016 20:15 Amsterdam Muziekgebouw aan 't IJ Sold out
  • Fri 07 Oct 2016 20:16 Rotterdam Rotterdamse Schouwburg
  • Sat 08 Oct 2016 20:00 Enschede Grote Kerk
  • Sun 09 Oct 2016 20:00 Tilburg Theaters Tilburg
  • Tue 11 Oct 2016 20:00 Apeldoorn Orpheus

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